Does He Need Space? The Subtle Hints Guys Give When They Want Space

Your man is acting distant lately. But what is the problem? You are probably wondering, “does he need space?” Here are the answers you need to know.

does he need space

Answering the question, “does he need space” is not easy for most women. Most serious relationships will need a break every so often.

And by break, it could also mean some serious soul-searching time apart like sleeping in separate rooms, taking a solo trip abroad, or moving out completely!

Many people look at this as the worst thing that could possibly happen to a couple. On the contrary, you should look at this as a way for both parties to gain some perspective and re-center yourselves.

[Read: Relationship break – The 17 rules and what it really means to take a break from each other]

Wanting space from each other isn’t a bad thing!

There is nothing wrong with taking a breather. Spending some time apart will give you time to focus on what is important, while allowing you to miss each other again.

Rekindling the flames of passion is just as important to a relationship as it is to be in each other’s faces all the time. More often than not, it is the man who initiates the need to spend some time apart.

Needing space does not necessarily mean that he’s cheating. It could simply mean that he needs some time off to think about stuff. Perhaps the relationship is moving too quickly for him.

Or he could be under a lot of pressure from work. Maybe he has unresolved family drama that needs his attention. Perhaps he just wants to zone out and catch up on video games.

[Read: The right way to give a guy space without losing him or your confused mind]

Why do men need space?

This might sound stereotypical, but men tend to need more space than women. The reason for this is mostly rooted in biology.

Think about it. Back in the caveman days, men were the hunters, and women were the gatherers/nurturers. Men had to leave their huts to go out into the wilderness on their own to hunt down an animal to eat… then drag it back to the family so they don’t starve to death. He might even be gone for days or weeks while doing this.

On the contrary, women need to be more connected to people, both physically and emotionally. Women bear the children, and they are their primary caregivers. So, they have to be biologically wired for connection. [Read: How to make your man happy – 30 ways to leave him smitten and hooked]

You see, the biology of men and women are very different for a reason. And that reason is survival. True, most of us in civilized society don’t live like the cavemen did. But, even though that’s true, our biology has not changed much since the eons passed.

As you might guess, being biologically wired to leave the “nest” for long periods of time is “normal” for men, even in the 21st century! [Read: How to know when to give someone their space – Don’t be THAT person!]

Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus

There was a very popular book that was written back in the 1990s called Men are From Mars, Women are From Venus by John Gray. In fact, it sold more copies than any other book other than the Bible during that decade. That means a LOT of people read it.

In it, he explains some very basic differences between men and women. His main claim is that they are so different that they might as well be from different planets.

One of his major concepts is that of the “cave.” He says that men need to go to their caves to solve problems. However, women need to talk to solve their problems. There is where the problem lies.

This cave is both physical and metaphorical. It could be that he just wants to be alone and not in the same space as you. Or, it could just mean that he needs some psychological or emotional space.

John Gray explains that this causes problems for women when men go to their caves. It makes them mad.

As a result, women sit outside the cave *metaphorically speaking* and beg the man to come out of it. But this just makes the man more angry, and so he wants to stay in the cave even more.

The suggestion the author makes in the book is that women should just let him go into his cave and let him come out when he wants to. Nagging him to come out won’t do any good. So be patient, because he’ll eventually get lonely and want to come out on his own. [Read: How to make a guy miss you – 20 very subtle moves to leave any guy obsessed]

How can you know if your man want some space?

Whatever his reasons are for wanting some space away from you, you need to respect his wishes if you want to keep him. No woman wants to initiate the space-giving conversation, and it is completely normal to not pay any attention to the signs that he gives off.

Try not to make that mistake and just listen to what he says and does. If you have no idea what to look out for, here are the subtle hints that he needs more space. [Read: How to love someone without smothering them]

1. He falls off the grid

Once a man falls off the grid, you know that he needs time away from you. Whether it’s not picking up your calls or ignoring your text messages, no communication is the clearest hint that you could get. This usually happens when men feel trapped.

Men can be pussies in the sense that they would rather disappear than confront you head-on. This disappearing act of his may mean that he wants to leave for good, so how you react to this will greatly determine whether he stays or goes.

If you throw a hissy fit and come down hard on him, you make his decision that much easier.

Try to practice understanding and empathy if this happens, and he will realize what a catch you are. Use this time away from each other to reflect on your relationship or to have some “me time.” [Read: Why is he ignoring you all of a sudden? 22 answers before you make up your mind]

2. He makes his own plans

Once your guy starts making his own plans and doesn’t confer with you, take it as a clear sign that he needs some space.

When couples are in a happy and healthy relationship, there is usually no question about what is going to happen over the weekend.

It is a given that you are going to spend time together, whether it’s zoning out on the couch or heading off to the beach. When he makes his own plans, don’t go on a stalking rampage, because that’s just going to push him further away from you. [Read: The raw psychological effects of being ignored by someone you love]

3. He feeds you bullshit

Not literally. But like a mushroom, he feeds you shit and keeps you in the dark. Many men resort to this tactic to get their way.

Whether it is lying to you and saying that he has to spend time with his mother who is visiting or that he has a ton of work to do and cannot meet up with you for the next two weeks, it is not uncommon for men to lie.

Many men do this just so they don’t have to explain the why, where, when, and how to you. It is simpler to feed you a bunch of lies than to handle all your questions.

If you find out that he lied to you, confront him but give him the space that he asks for. The last thing you want to do is give him a rough time right before he’s scheduled to spend time away from you. [Read: How to tell if a guy is ignoring you – 40 very clear signs he’s just playing you]

4. He mentions taking a break

Once your guy starts talking about the possibility of taking a break from the relationship, he is already at his wit’s end and really needs space away from you.

Although most men would rather resort to falling off the grid or lying to you, so that he does not have to deal with all the questions, others may just nip the problem in the bud and ask for an official break from the relationship.

Don’t panic if this happens. It doesn’t necessarily mean that he wants to leave you, it could just mean that he is feeling overwhelmed and needs a time out.

Give him some time off on the condition that he schedules a sit-down talk with you once he has had some time alone. [Read: Why is my boyfriend so mean? 19 reasons why’s so rude all of a sudden]

5. You argue more

Once you start getting on each other’s nerves, it all goes downhill from there. If you find that you are fighting a lot more than usual, it is probably a good idea to step back.

This does not mean giving in to his whims of wanting to take time off from you. It simply means that you are giving your relationship the time that it needs to heal.

Giving each other some space will be great, not just for him but for you as well. Don’t stave off the importance of spending some time apart. Give yourselves the opportunity to miss one another and things will be much better when you finally decide to step back in. [Read: How to stop texting someone when that’s all you want to do]

6. He’s never available

Once you find that your man is becoming less and less available, be it emotionally, physically or both, it is a clear hint that he wants his space.

Not spending time with you is the simplest and most straightforward way to tell you that he would rather spend his time doing something else.

Maybe the relationship is getting too much for him to handle. Perhaps he has other things on his mind that should not concern you. Either way, leave him to his own devices to get himself together. [Read: 30 facts about guys that can help you know what’s on his mind]

7. He cancels on you way too much

Whether it is delaying that eagerly anticipated trip to the museum together or canceling on date night yet again, you can be sure that he does not want to spend time with you.

It doesn’t mean he doesn’t care about you. It could simply mean that he needs some personal time.

Spending time apart is not the worst thing ever as it will give you the chance to do things with your girlfriends, family, or focus on yourself. That is probably just what he needs as well, so just let it be and don’t make too big a deal out of it. Ask him upfront if he needs space and if he says yes, give in to him. [Read: 21 signs of a clingy girlfriend and how to avoid turning into one]

8. He never initiates plans

Similar to him being unavailable, you can tell that your guy needs space when he doesn’t make the attempt to initiate plans with you.

This change should be amplified even more, if he was always the one who took the lead to plan your dates.

Don’t take this the wrong way. It’s just his simple way of saying that there are other things that he would like to do without you. [Read: How to make him feel guilty for ignoring you and take back the power]

9. You can feel the emotional distance

Whether you have been together long-term or not, you should be able to tell when your man is feeling emotionally distant.

You will sense that something is wrong, that he talks less, initiates sex less often, and overall seems more impersonal.

Some men just tend to shut down when they want something, but they don’t know how to ask for it. If this is the case, it may be better if you broach the subject with him first. [Read: 24 signs he misses you badly every time you aren’t around]

10. He becomes unsettlingly honest

Some men will resort to pure honesty when they have exhausted all other options.

Maybe you just couldn’t take the hint or he simply doesn’t have time to play games. In any case, you should be grateful if your man has the courage to tell you straight up that he needs more space.

Commend him for it, and just let him have what he wants!

[Read: How to be a good girlfriend – 27 ways to make him love you more]

Yes, a man does need space. Needing space doesn’t necessarily mean he doesn’t want to be with you. It just means he wants to spend his time focusing on something other than his relationship with you!

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