12 possible reasons he keeps coming back but won’t commit (and what to do about it)

He comes back just as you were about to move on—and then he leaves, again.

And this isn’t the first time either. Perhaps it’s his fifth, or perhaps it’s his hundredth time, but he seems to have made a habit out of it.

You just can’t figure out what he’s playing at.

In this article, I will give you no-BS reasons a man would keep coming back but won’t commit, and some tips on how to handle it.

But before we get started, I’d like to let you know none of this—absolutely none of this —is your fault.

Sure, there are some things that you can do to make a man commit (I will share to you how exactly later), but if a man comes and goes, it is the man who usually has a problem.

Besides, your value should not be measured by the kinds of relationships you’re having (or not having).

Just think of how many A-holes you know in your life who are with awesome partners. And think of how many awesome people there who are with a-holes or who are single.

You see, even if you’re the prettiest, smartest, and kindest person on earth if a man doesn’t want to commit to you, he just won’t.

But even if you’re the “ugliest duckling” if a man is willing to commit, he will!

So read this list without thinking there’s a problem with YOU.

Instead, read it as your basic guide to how men tick so you can get the results you want.

Here are 15 possible reasons he keeps coming back but won’t commit:

1) He’s just not that into you.

In general, men aren’t evil. Yes, there are a few who are deliberately out there to break the hearts of women, but they’re not the majority.

Contrary to popular belief, most of them have good intentions.

One of the top reasons some men keep coming back is that they’re truly interested in a woman. And yet, their feelings are not strong enough or they’re not yet ready (or any other legit reason) for them to actually commit.

Take note: He probably wants to want you so bad, and that’s why he keeps trying!

Maybe the connection is just not strong enough (yet) or he’s experienced a strong love when he’s younger and he’s looking for that exact kind of love from you. There are a million and one reasons why a man won’t commit!

But whatever the reason is, he’s probably coming back to you again and again, but without bad intentions.

2) He likes parts of you, but not the whole package.

Perhaps your sex is out of this world, but he’s not too fond of your personality or maybe your ideals clash.

Perhaps he finds you smart and attractive, yet the two of you just don’t have the chemistry he’s looking for.

And thus yes, he is drawn to you—craving for the things that he loves the most in you. But then he leaves, because before long, the things he doesn’t want begin to grate at him.

It might not necessarily be a total loss. Perhaps he’s trying to figure out if he can love more of you.

Besides, who knows what the future has to bring? He might just realize his feelings for you, or come to accept all of you as he grows and matures.

Or maybe the two of you are approaching this the wrong way, and you’re better off being friends with benefits instead of partners.

While in general, women are more forgiving of some flaws, men in general usually look for the whole package before they pursue a woman.

Maybe you’re missing that one important box in his checklist.

3) He’s not ready to enter a relationship.

When someone is not ready to have a relationship, they’d try to seize the moment but leave when you’re about to grow feelings for them.

Yes, they could be head over heels in love with you but if a man is not ready, he will try to stay away because he’s afraid he will just hurt you—which is ironic, since he’s already doing so if he’s aware you’re into him.

He may not be ready for many reasons.

For example, it could be that he thinks he still has to get his life in order, he’s broke AF, he just got out of a relationship…the possible reasons are endless.

Until he deals with those things that keep him from being ready to commit, he will remain a bachelor.

This guy is probably idealistic about love and he’d rather be 100% ready than to commit only to change his mind after a while.

4) Get advice from a professional.

Look, it’s not exactly easy to figure this stuff out on your own. I mean, you’re not a professional when it comes to relationships. 

That being said, there are people whose job it is to know everything about relationships and to help people figure this stuff out.

I’m talking about relationship coaches of course.

Relationship Hero is a popular website with dozens of amazing coaches to choose from. They helped me when I was having some trouble with my partner last year so I know from first-hand experience that they know their stuff.

So, if you wanna figure out why your guy keeps leaving and coming back, talk to one of their coaches. More than that, they’ll give you advice on what you can do to help him overcome his commitment issues.

Sounds good, right?

Click here to get started.

5) He’s naturally indecisive.

Maybe he is ready and maybe he’s really into you but some men just take a lifetime to make life decisions.

Sometimes there’s a deeper reason for it—like his parents were too strict growing up—or it could be that he’s just born that way.

Pay attention to how fast or slow he makes decisions in simple things such as which restaurant to go to or which brand of shampoo to buy.

But more than that, pay attention to his dating history and how many girlfriends he had. If he only has a few, maybe he really does take his time to choose a life partner.

While this may appear to be a bad thing on the surface (especially if you’re starting to doubt his intentions), it might actually be a sign that he’s a loyal boyfriend once he’s committed.

He took the time to decide, after all. And we can assume it will also take him a long time to break up with you.

6) He isn’t in a rush.

He’s in no urgent need to get into a relationship, with you or anyone else.

It could be that he thinks of himself as young—or is young—and can’t see himself settling for someone yet. He’d rather take his time…and why not?

It could also be specifically with you. And that’s because he thinks you’re always just there and you won’t be leaving him anytime soon.

For him, it’s the same thing as “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”

“If there’s no threat and no one is unhappy, why change things?”

He sees no point in tying himself down and committing to you since he already gets everything that he needs just by being friends anyways.

And unless you voiced out that you don’t like this set up, he would not think he’s doing anything wrong.

7) He has other priorities in life right now.


There are men who are not satisfied with being good, they want to be great!

Maybe he’s an ambitious guy—perhaps he wants to be the next Steve Jobs or the next Rafael Nadal. If so, he will always use his brain over his heart no matter what.

What’s happening when he goes near you is that he’s following his heart, and when he’s about to fall much deeper, he uses his brain because for him, it’s the only way he can pursue his dreams. And that’s why he leaves.

If he’s this type of guy, ask yourself if you’re willing to wait.

He may not want to be in a relationship with you because he knows you and his career will suffer if you get together now.

But maybe in five years or a decade, perhaps?

Or maybe you’re willing to commit even if you won’t be his top priority. If this is the case, then you probably should tell him. It might just be what he’s waiting for.

8) He just truly enjoys hanging out with you.

Whether or not there’s a romantic connection between the two of you, the guy definitely likes hanging out with you.

It’s possible that he sees you as just a good friend—and yes, that applies even if the two of you have sex. There’s this concept called being “friends with benefits” after all.

And because he thinks of the two of you as friends, he probably doesn’t even realize the effect he has on you, much less his coming and going.

He probably doesn’t even think of it as him coming and going into your life, because as far as he’s concerned, he never left!

9) He likes his ego stroked.

He’s aware that you like him so he goes to you whenever he likes a little ego boost—a meager smattering of praise to give him the reassurance he needs.

Maybe he doesn’t care for you personally, and there’s another girl he wants. But he just got dumped and is down, so he runs to you with his tail between his legs.

You’re a convenient person to rebound with. But once he’s recovered, he’d leave to go date someone else.

There’s no doubt, of course, that if he uses you like this knowing that you have feelings for him, he’s a jerk.

He probably knows that everytime he comes to you, he stirs emotions that you’ve been trying to tame. But he doesn’t care—he only cares about himself.

If he’s not aware that he’s hurting you by doing this, then you must tell him and work on your self-esteem issues.

10) He’s enjoying the dating world.

Perhaps he’s a wallflower who only recently came out of his shell. The dating world is new and exciting to him, so he goes around meeting as many new people as he can.

You’re his favorite, so he keeps coming back to you. But he’s not ready to settle with you just yet, so he leaves every now and then to meet someone else.

There’s pretty much nothing you can do about a guy who’s still trying to explore.

He’s still trying to figure out what he wants. And for all you know, perhaps he thinks of himself as young, wild, and forever free.

Word of advice: Don’t try manipulating him to settle for you before he’s ready.

He might just realize he made the wrong choice later on, feel suffocated, and try to get out of the relationship for real.

And even if he might have chosen you anyways, he might resent that you forced him to make a choice.

Give him more time to explore, but remember that you don’t have to remain a doormat to his indecisiveness—make it clear that you can’t wait, and that if someone better comes along you’ll happily go with them instead.

11) He’s actually in love with someone else.

Sometimes people just quite can’t get over that one person that got away.

He might try to move on and date you. But deep down inside he just couldn’t find that spark that he loved in that other person.

Perhaps he might have already told you about this other girl, and told you the struggles he has with getting over her. But you blocked it from your heart because you really like him.

Or perhaps he never told you directly, but it’s clear enough from his pensive looks and unease that he has someone else on his mind.

He would leave, thinking that you don’t deserve to be with someone who doesn’t love you with all his heart—and then come back, because he’s already attached to you.

If you are still willing to be with him, the answer to getting him to stay for real is to make him love you over that other woman who’s in all likelihood out of his reach now.

The thing is, we all want what we can’t have so the desirability of his “fantasy woman” of his will always be higher compared to the real-life, easy-access you…until he grows up and heals for real.

12) He’s afraid of getting hurt.

Maybe he was burnt from his last relationship or he’s so in love with you he knows you are capable of hurting him…and this scares him like a mouse being cornered by a lion.

Of course, who isn’t afraid of getting hurt?

Even the bravest of us feel a little trepidation at the very idea. But at the same time, it’s admittedly a poor excuse for him coming and going as often as he does.

You may know this attitude by another name—cowardice.

On the bright side, it’s not that bad. If you could manage to snap him out of his fears and reassure him, then maybe you can finally be together.

If you want him to commit, be truly honest about how you feel.

You’re way past dating at this point.

If he’s been coming back to you several times, maybe you’re longtime friends, exes, or friends with benefits.

And because of this, you SHOULD be able to tell him everything that you feel.

If this makes you uncomfortable, then find the courage to be vulnerable. It’s not easy but it’s the only way to go if you want to advocate for yourself and turn your life around.

You don’t want to act all chill just to keep him around. Being “nice” has gotten you nowhere.

You’re obviously not happy with crumbs, so don’t pretend you are!

How to do it

1) Do some introspection.

Ask yourself how you truly feel about the situation. Write everything down on a piece of paper and ask yourself if it looks okay. Ask yourself if you really want him or you just want a relationship.

Lastly, write down the traits you want in a boyfriend. Does he truly have those traits or you’re just blinded by the passion?

2) Have an honest talk.

Once you’re more aware of yourself and your feelings, talk to him. Don’t feel like you’re being “crazy” or that you’re asking too much.

This guy has been coming in and out of your life and you deserve to have an honest talk with him.

3) There should be a ticking bomb.

Set a deadline, put an ultimatum, let him know you’ll not hang around forever.

After all, if he’s going to be wasting your time by playing with you, you might as well go and date someone less problematic instead.

Sure, you could wait. And maybe he’ll wise up and start putting in real effort… but how old would you be by then? 75?

Nobody can wait around forever.

And regardless of his reasons, it’s selfish for him (and unwise of you) to keep extending the non-relationship that you both have.


There’s no denying that it’s frustrating to have a man play chicken with you.

It’s fine to be outraged—after all, it’s almost like he’s just trying to keep you addicted to him!

We’ve explored the many reasons why he might be led to act this way, but just because he might have a good reason, doesn’t mean YOU should accept being treated this way.

Think first and foremost about yourself, and what you want.

If you no longer like the way he makes you feel, it’s time for you to set boundaries and give him a firm “no” the next time he comes back.

But if you do still want him and you’re hopeful you’ll be together one day, then you should definitely take steps to bring an end to his indecisiveness.

I really advise talking to a professional at Relationship Hero about this, I’m sure that with their experience and insight, you’ll get the help you so desperately need to make him commit. Good luck!

Pearl Nash

Pearl Nash has years of experience writing relationship articles for single females looking for love. After being single for years with no hope of meeting Mr. Right, she finally managed to get married to the love of her life. Now that she’s settled down and happier than she’s ever been in her life, she's passionate about sharing all the wisdom she's learned over the journey. Pearl is also an accredited astrologer and publishes Hack Spirit's daily horoscope.

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