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Is He Putting You on the Back Burner?

My passion is writing about love, sex, dating, and relationships. I write based on my own personal experiences and those that I relate to.


Things have definitely changed in your relationship. You have tried time and again to talk to him, but when you do, he won't open up. He will convince you that it's not you, even though he has done a complete 180 in regards to your relationship. He will make excuse after excuse....none of which make the least amount of logical sense!

Although his excuses have become nothing less than ridiculous, you decide to give him the space that he obviously needs. You wait patiently—hoping that your relationship will magically revert back to the way it was in the beginning. Don't hold your breath. Time does not always work in your favor.

As weeks or possibly months continue to pass, you start collecting the "I miss you" texts, followed by a couple of "hope to see you soon" messages, thrown in for good measure. He never seems able to commit to a date or an actual plan as to when you will see him. He seems to have forgotten about the way he treated you in the beginning of your relationship. You can't even remember the last time you spent a weekend together and the memory of him—what it feels like to hold him, his smell and even his energy, is starting to fade.

During his chosen absence from your life, you begin to question if the so called relationship you have been believing still exists, is worth the humiliation you are feeling in your heart and soul. Yes, he is still calling a few times a week—to prove to you that he still cares, but why do the phone calls feel strained—more like a chore, rather than how it used to be? The organic nature of your conversations start to dissipate, making you feel like you are reconnecting with a very distant friend, instead of a boyfriend. Is he worth waiting for and more importantly, exactly what are you waiting for?

Just when you are about to give up hope, he conveniently makes an effort to see you—although to you, it feels more like guilt on his end. Why now? Is it because you have recently expressed how frustrated you are? Or could it be because you suggested either ending things or keeping your options open to date other people? Finding time to see you seems to have become quite an effort for him. Whatever it is that has finally inspired him to see you—which is most likely him dangling an acorn to buy him more time. While he decides what he really wants, you stay hopeful and open-minded.

Being able to finally see him after way too many weeks have passed, makes you feel as if you have grabbed the brass ring on the carousel (really?). Since you want to believe that he does want to save the relationship and be with you, you choose to ignore All Red Flags that are pointing in the complete opposite direction.

When you do see him, all of the feelings for him flow back into your heart, instantaneously. His attention is 100% with you—he will either leave his phone in his car or turn off the ringer. It will feel like the best date or time spent together in a really long time—making you believe that this time the effort he is making is genuine. How could it not be?

The chemistry is great, the conversation flows with so much ease. You laugh and smile together as if nothing has changed and intimacy feels as if no time has ever separated the two of you. But sadly, this seems to be just a vortex of spanned time. The moment you leave one another, you feel lost and alone. You are wondering if your relationship will progress the way you have anticipated.

In actuality, everything seems to go right back to the way it was before you spent time together. It feels as if he had walked through a time portal, which instantaneously dropped him off right on the same day that he started making the infamous excuse about why he has no time for you. Out of sight, out of mind so quickly? He just saw you. How can he forget so quickly how great you both are together?

Ladies, it's not as if he has forgotten how great you are or how great the relationship is. How can he forget something that he is incapable of seeing? Something that is right in front of him? Men make time for what they feel and believe is important to them. Plenty of men in the world have many responsibilities, and are still able to make time for their loved ones. Life is all about choices. You are just not one of his. When a guy doesn't make the time to see you—two days a week or even one, you are Not a priority, and he does Not see a future with you. Wake-Up!

I have met many men on my dating journey, and the one thing that most of them have expressed holds true. When a guy clearly pictures seeing a woman in his life for the long haul, he will move heaven and earth to be with her and will do everything in his power to keep her.

A man who wants to be with you won't carelessly do things to risk losing you. He won't give you excuse, after excuse, after excuse to why he can't possibly see you. He will figure out a way to make the time. Instead of telling you when he can't see you, he will let you know when he can. By doing this, he gives you the security of knowing how he feels about you.

Relationships are about building a future together, not apart. A man who sincerely sees a future with you, will not keep you on the back-burner—taking his time to decide if you or the relationship is really what he wants. You deserve to be with a guy who doesn't change from frequently seeing you, to letting weeks or possibly months go by, flippantly telling you, "three weeks isn't a long time" or claiming that he didn't realize that you have not spent a weekend together in over six weeks. Seriously...he didn't notice?!

Again, a guy who wants to be with you, values you, loves you, and respects you, will notice and care how long it has been since he has seen you. When you talk to him about it, he will not listen with a slight annoyance, or not listen at all. A guy who cares will not let so much time pass without seeing you, and if it happens, he will work hard to make sure that a pattern does not develop.

Things come up, I get it. However, if the guy you are having a relationship with isn't traveling out of the country for work, how can he not find a way to balance you in his life? How does he allow weeks to pass before seeing you, especially when he was once able to spend quality time with you? Having a guy put you on the back-burner is a major step back in any relationship. It's also a Major Red Flag, especially if you have been dating for only a few months and felt you have built a strong emotional foundation.

I know that love seems to be harder to find as you grow older. However, you should never compromise what you deserve to simply have a mate. Life is too short to waste your precious time waiting around for a guy to decide if you are what he really wants. Do you really want to be on the back-burner, only to have the inevitable happen? You shouldn't have to be ready to throw in the towel and completely give up on him before he decides to finally make time for you. Giving you just enough attention to keep you reeled in for a few more weeks, while he continues to check out both emotionally and physically.

The worst thing you can do in a relationship is sacrifice your own happiness by making excuses for his shitty behavior. A guy should protect your heart, not treat it with such disregard.

Ladies, if a guy majorly lessens his communication (Red Flag) and can't find anytime to see you (Red Flag) during the week as well as over the weekends, you are no longer a priority. Period! Justifying his bad behavior by waiting around and believing his excuses only makes you look like a fool. Don't be that girl!

Bottom line, you deserve a man who wants to make and find time for you in his life, regardless how busy he becomes. You deserve to be with a guy who wants a future with you and is working to make that happen, versus having you wait around for his sex-amusement. Perhaps you should take a step back in time, to a simpler place....Don't think so much. Don't complicate all of these thoughts in your head. Simply follow the Golden Rule in life. Chances are, there is a guy out there looking for the same.

This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.


Becky on July 15, 2018:

Why do guys do this? Is such a waste of time. If you aren't totally into a girl, move on and let her move on!!! The worst thing you can do is waste someone's time. Grow a pair

Stephanie Bailey (author) from Denver on November 22, 2014:

"Calling someone to see what they will come over or want to go out an hour after talking to them shows no effort and no care. Being available for that behavior is a mistake women often make that leads to their being devalued by a man."...Amen, Amen, Amen realtalk247. That statement says it all!!

Thank you for reading my new friend. I have many more articles and I look forward to your opinion. :)

realtalk247 on November 22, 2014:

Omg Miss-Adventures

"When you get in the habit of scheduling your life around his" Men rarely lose their friendships but yet women make a man their entire life. That is great point to maintain being a whole person and complimenting the relationship rather than making one person your everything.

I agree with planning ahead as well. Calling someone to see what they will come over or want to go out an hour after talking to them shows no effort and no care. Being available for that behavior is a mistake women often make that leads to their being devalued by a man.

I love your articles Miss-Adventures. Can't wait to read what you have in store next!

Stephanie Bailey (author) from Denver on November 21, 2014:

Thank you realtalk247...that makes my heart smile and thank you for reading my articles and taking time to comment. :)

I agree that "playing by the code" is important.

As women we often keep ourselves too available for men---not making plans with girlfriends until we know when the guy we are dating or in a relationship with is available to see us. Usually this same thought process is not reciprocated by him.

When you get in the habit of scheduling your life around his, it can be easy for a guy to intentionally or unintentionally put you on the back burner. Why not, he knows that you will be willingly waiting. :/

Although it's important to make time---it should never be one sided. The time to see a guy should be planned ahead---by both of you discussing the day(s)/time(s), so that your life can also revolve around You as well.

Again, thank you for reading. :)

realtalk247 on November 19, 2014:

I love your articles. This article is so true:

"Men make time for what they feel and believe is important to them. . When a guy doesn't make the time to see you—two days a week or even one, you are Not a priority, and he does Not see a future with you. Wake-Up! "

This is so true and it's important not to make excuses for their behavior. The problem is most of the time women do not pay attention to the shift in behavior and adjust the time and energy they put into the man. When you are in bliss dating and then suddenly you notices he does not want to take you out anymore, doesn't call, and/or wants you to just hang out at his place THAT's when you take charge as a woman. You should never desire or want someone who does not desire or value you. That's why you have to keep the player rules in mind and live by the code:

1. He is not your man unless you have had that discussion of monogamy and he has earned his right to be your man. Yes I said it.

2. Keep dating. Never forgo the opportunity to meet someone else, if he isn't calling you, he isn't passing up dating opportunities on your behalf believe me.

3. Never be available whenever he calls or wants you to come by *if the behavior is not reciprocal.

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