Men and the Dreaded Pull Back Phase

Filed under Blog

losingtouchWritten by: Heidi Bilonick

How to tell if this is Normal or If He’s Just Not into You

You are trucking along fine. You’ve met a great guy. He’s calling all the time.
You go out and things are marvelous! You tell all your friends about the great new guy you’re dating. You even start to think of him as your boyfriend. Then all of the sudden, he stops calling. Or, he tells you to call him and he is suddenly busy.

Or, a week goes by with no contact and he forwards you one of those stupid joke emails. Or worse? He does none of those things, and when you see him out he says, “Where did you disappear to?”

Almost all men go through what we women have come to know and sometimes
hate as “The Pull Back Phase.” It can be a frustrating time.

But what is it? And how can you stop it? Well, unfortunately it can be a normal stage that all relationships go through. So stopping it? Isn’t necessarily going to be an option.

I suppose the real question is, “Is it a pull back phase or is he just not that into me?”

That can be a tougher scenario to decipher. Most men, when they start getting close to a woman, go through a time period when they just aren’t sure how they feel about you. They ask themselves questions like:

“What else might be out there?”

“Do I really want this girl to be my girlfriend?”

“How does this girl make me feel about myself when I am with her?”

“Do I like her?”

“Am I really that into her?”

Now, suffice it to say men and women are different. We can multi-task. But men tend to kind of go away while they are questioning. And they don’t even realize you are there, left high and dry, wondering and – YES! – waiting.

In the process, we tend to want to do, say, or be the right thing so we can go back to the way things used to be. We call him when he doesn’t call us. We send him an email saying we want to talk about the relationship. Or, in some cases, we play it cool long enough until we get to the point where we get so frustrated, we end up telling him about himself.

Here’s the rub; while you are doing these random acts of kindness to win him back over to your side, you are actually pushing him further away. You see, when he is just wondering how he feels about you (which EVERYONE should ponder at some point) and you are a step away from boiling rabbits, he can quickly form an unfavorable opinion! He might wonder: “What happened to this girl? She used to be so cool and now she is like a stalker!” Not a good impression, eh?

So, what do you do in the dreaded pull back phase? YOU decide how you feel about HIM! Fill up your time with friends and family. Life is too short to wait by the phone!

Ask yourself:

“How do I feel about myself when I am in this relationship?”

“What kind of partner do I think he will make?”

“How am I feeling about him?”

“Do I want to spend more time getting to know him?”


All is fair in love and pull back. You absolutely should be asking yourself the same questions he is asking himself. Use the time to really put this relationship in perspective. Down time can be a blessing!

Now let’s answer that other pesky question: Is it a pull back or is he really not into me?

If it sounds like:

“I have let him have his space during the pull back phase

and he came back, but not as strong.”


“He never came back!”

Both are strong possibilities if it is a phase designed to make some decisions, you have to be ok with what that decision is.

See, we know when a guy isn’t into us. But the problem is we don’t want to believe it. We would rather believe that he is not ready to commit, he has issues, or he is just really busy. We want to believe those things because then? It can’t be us. But the thing is, it isn’t us anyway… it’s us and him, together. What I mean is, two people have to agree to want to be in a relationship. And no amount of willing, wishing or nagging will ever be enough to make it work if it just doesn’t work.

Remember: it’s important to have enough self respect to free yourself up so you can find what you are looking for. Go back to those questions I wanted you to ask yourself earlier and ask them.

Then ask these:

“Why would you want to be with someone who says he’s going to call and doesn’t?”

“Why would you want to be with someone who disappears on you?”

”Why is that okay with you?”

It’s time to make it less about what he thinks about you, and more about what you think about yourself when you are with him. If he makes you feel bad, that’s bad! Make sense?

I also recommend that you take some time after you answer these questions to set some boundaries.

“What are you willing to tolerate?”

“What kind of behavior will you accept?”

“What will it have to feel like for you to decide to move on?”

“What kind of relationship do you really want?”

Wrapping it up, YOU have the power to create the type of relationship you want!

Question is, “How long do you want to wait?”


The following information is about the author of the above article.   This article was found in ezine articles.  Thanks for sharing your great advice Heidi!  You can also find Heidi Bilonick on Facebook.

heidiHeidi Bilonick, Professional Certified Life Coach, believes in you! I definitely do! Because I know the Secret! I know that YOU have the power to change anything and everything in your life from “what if”, “If only” and “Should”, to “I CAN!” “I DID!” and “I AM!” You can do this by allowing me to help you get out of your own way by teaching you how to apply the Laws of Attraction. Do you know the saying when it rains it pours? Do you know that you are the rainmaker and have the personal power to SHINE? YOU DO! Whether it’s relationships, work, weightloss, or any other thing in life that seems to be holding you back, I can help you tap into your power to turn it all around! My role as a coach is to help you get what you want most!Coaching is a co-creative process designed to help you live a more fulfilling life. As your trained professional coach, I will help you define what is important to you and provide the structure, guidance, and support you need to get there. As your coach, I will be your sounding board, truth-teller,and biggest fan! Contact me at



Are you ready to take the first step and start meeting other relationship minded people?  Would you like help in determining the best way to go about it?  Click the button below so we can make a proactive plan of action!


Don’t miss another post…If you haven’t already, subscribe now!

MissMatchMaker's - Blogs


30 Responses to “Men and the Dreaded Pull Back Phase”

  1. Miss MatchMaker

    Great advice Heidi! I know this pull back phase can be very tough for women. I can’t tell you how many times I have had to walk both friends and clients through this! I am looking forward to more posts from you.


  2. Trish

    Welcome to my world of dating, this “pull-back” crap is for the birds,
    It is wise to be aware it could happen and be prepared ~!
    Interesting stuff….
    and Go with It!

  3. Destin Girl

    I hate this pull back phase! Countless times I have been through this and it never gets easier…

  4. DW

    I do believe women go through this too!

  5. Betty

    Men are idiots!

  6. Bleu

    I wish I knew half as much as you about men……………..Are you married? In a relationship? You’re brilliant……

  7. Heidi Bilonick

    Hi Ladies! Thank you all for your feedback. YES…dated a loser who did the dance for way too long! Trouble was…I let him. After all, “You teach people how to treat you!” So, I ended it! Now, after a long time of being single…I am in another relationship. Trouble is…they ALL go through it. So, I will continue to take my own advice. LOL!!!!! Keep me posted and email me at! To you lovely ladies!
    Coach Heidi

  8. Deacon

    The biggest reason, according to my own experience and that of about half a dozen of my friends is simply that we feel taken for granted.

    Not much more to it than that.

  9. Zian Harrington

    I liked this. She a gave a real perspective on what it is like for women to experience when they become with a guy that they like.

  10. James

    Awesome advice Heidi, I believe it is imperative for the ladies to never compromise their standards and never settle. If a man is not able or willing to treat you the way you deserve to be treated then it is time to move on. Do give him some breathing space but not too much. It is easy to get overly attached and to create expectations that are not healthy. You are spot on when you said that you teach us how to treat you. If you do not keep to your standards then we will not treat you with respecy and love.
    I would like to add one more reason for the pullback. If we men feel that we are falling for you too hard, we may pull back because we feel we are losing control. Control over our feelings, control over the situation , and yes, even control over you, A lot of us need to feel that we are the dominant one and if we feel that is being lost , well, you know

  11. ehw

    Thank you for talking about this, I have just learned about this part of a man`s emotional make up in a book, Men are from MARS Women are from VENUS by John Gray. I just happened to come across this site in my Google search for Porch Swings, I live in Norway so they are not that common here and I have always wanted to have one of those…anyway I read Miss Matchmaker`s blogg about the Porch Swing Test and it helped me to get an anwser I needed about a man I have, a little to my own surprise, been in love with for a very, very long time…
    And, yes, my situation falls under the, “It`s complicated” category, then I read Heidi`s blogg and it just confirmed what I have `known`all along… I have been with my husband for 15 years and been married for going on 8 years plus 2 children… I am also the typical “Caregiver”…but I have learned to set boundries and just planely not give a damn about whatever…sometimes, and smile because I deserve to do so:)
    I have always been the one to be patient and be grateful for my life, so far,an for what it has challeged me with and thougth me, and I find myself in the situation that I beleive with my whole, broken, heart what James commented about this “Pullback” thing that men do and that it could also be because they really do feel that they have no control over the situation they suddenly find themselves in…
    Thank you James for telling me what I have in my heart suspected about the man I have lost my heart to, circumstance and other commitments to work and our private lives have made it difficult to even consider trying to be together, but he is the man I see myself on that porch swing with despite the the fact that he and I have only dared to acknowledge the intense emotional and physical attraction we have had for each other for 10 years and we have tried to ignore it and go on with our own ” seperate” lives…we have only talked on the phone and he dosen`t call or send a text and I try to understand and be patient, but I too get frustrated even if I `know`why he is acting like this all I feel is sorry for him and sad because I know that love is a gift that we sometimes are not allowed to have or to keep so letting go is the best thing we can do, and it is so damned hard…those of you that are single are the lucky ones, it is still not accepted to be otherwise `happily married` and find yourself in love with the man who actually does respect and love you enough to pullback and leave you wondering, thinking the worst about him because your head and your heart do not agree with each other…I know `Butterflies don`t lie`and at the end of the day I can only dream of sitting on a porch swing knowing that only `Love remains` and be grateful for the experience of feeling something I had never felt before I met him and ignored the fact that my heart thumped like thunder, but I let my fears and common sense dictate my decisions…

  12. Anna

    I am going through this now and it is so hard. I began talking to this bloke about 4 months ago, we got on so well we talked all throughout the day and finally about 6 weeks ago we went on a first date which was absolutely lovely!

    4 weeks later we went on our 2nd one( He has a very busy job, and no I know he is telling the truth) after he dropped he home he was asking when can I see him again. That was a week ago and I have had like 4 messages from him which is really unusual…If he wanted to see me for a 3rd one, why is he pulling back??

    His birthday is in 2 weeks and I said did he want to do something, he said he is really busy with work at the moment because of year end. It is so hard keeping my distance because I don’t want to seem too eager now he is in this pull back phase..

    We have both been hurt pretty bad in the past so I don’t know if maybe this is affecting his decision to take things further or am I the typical girl trying to classify this relationship? :(

  13. Dee

    I just got reacquaited with a long ago romance from when I was 16. I found him again on FB. We met out of State and had a nice summer. I went home back to school and he went into the Navy. It was hard as we wrote letters and then eventually touch. I read his letters through the years but I never thought to find him. Seeing how in those days we didn’t have internet, social networking or cell phones. So I have been looking through some old boxes lately for personal reasons and I ran upon them again. This time I took them out I read them it was different. I called my Sister who I stayed with out of town but she didn’t answer. Then, I said ok, look on the site. So I found him and he didn’t get back to me until 2 weeks. He didn’t answer my message though, he just befriended me. So I asked him, “you’re not going to answer my question”. He then answered back with a yelping OMG! I do remember you! So he was excited and got to answer all these questions. He wanted to know everything about me and what I had been doing. So we started talking after he gave me his number and I gave him mine. He texted me everyday mostly and we talked. He was very reactive in the conversation but was always at work when we talked because he worked the swing shift. So everything has been going well discovering each other again and just seeing how it goes. Oh, he’s divorced with children and is single as I am. So we had a really nice moment and then he didn’t text for like 3 days. That was strange for me. It wasn’t like a normal weekend with my kids or I’m busy 3 days. It was like something is wrong or awkward, I need my space to think 3 days. So i finally said something and he said the, it was busy at work. He’s always so sweet talking and not quick to anger so far. So it just was like cool. I did send him an email (i know i shouldn’t have) no excuse. I just had some things to say. He didn’t respond. So he texted me when he had time that he was sorry about being busy, how was I doing? I just said, I’m good. I said yes I can see that this time of years gets crazy and he said thanks for understanding. We chatted a minute longer and then I ended it. I can tell something is different in him. He’s being really extra careful about what he says. I texted him the other day with something sweet and he hadn’t responded yet then I bothered him again. He said something sweet and we said goodnight. So it’s been 2 days since then. Something changed in him and I’m a talker. He’s reserved, intense, passionate Scorpio and I’m a Taurus. I’m wantiing to be engaging and he is on some foolishness. So anyway, I’m backing away and getting on with things. I don’t have control over me or the situation just me. I don’t know when he’ll call again but I just can’t take this. It’s not me. I don’t like myself like this. Feeling all yucky and wanted to hear his voice. We just found each other and yes, it was my idea to reach out to him but he seemed to think it was beautiful too. Did he get afraid? I don’t know but something happened. Will I wait around? No. I am making every step to continue with my journey and we’ll see what happens.

  14. Ana

    Sometimes they pull back because they are seeing another woman. In my case, I was excited about what I perceived as a new relationship, and the guy was still in love with his ex. Do you think he told me about this? No.
    I had to squeeze it out of him after he blew me off for “texting him too much”. I am not a stalker, but I had every right to get emotional after we became sexual. Be careful ladies!! Most men will take advantage if you are a loving, open person. And if you are lonely and need sex, be extra carefulwith your heart.

  15. Bobbie

    I received the “I need me time” email my question is this to determine if it’s really me time decifering the feelings or a good-bye me time how much time should a woman give a man before she realizes it’s one or the other. Mine actually took the time after the email to text me and let me know he went on a golfing trip with his buddies and when he’d be back but didn’t text again after that. So to remain “open armed” and not critical I texted him my usual good mornings for 2 days after I knew he was home and received nothing so today I quit texting him. and wiil take it as a good-bye “me” time email

  16. google



  17. krista

    I was dating an amazing Christian man for 3 months. He was all about me calling me, texting me, very complimentary, asked me to be exclusive after 2 months of dating, I said yes. We introduced are kids to each other. He is a very devoted father who’s ex wife cheated on him and married the man she left him for 3 years ago. He has a very demanding schedule between his work and son. I was very understanding of his crazy schedule and never acted needy or clingy. We never fought and always had a great time together. Then we had the most amazing date ever and I thought that night that he might be in love with me. Then 2 days later he dropped the bomb. He said he was feeling overwhelmed with his schedule and didnt feel like he was being a very good boyfriend to me that I deserved and not able to give me enough time. He told me he didnt want to stop seeing me but to step back and slow down because he didn’t feel ready to move forward. So I agreed and told him I totally understood. So for 2 weeks we tried the slower pace and the communication slowed down to once a day and the dates were only once in 2 weeks, the date was amazing though he kept telling me he wished he could relieve that day. The I asked him if the slow down between us meant that he wanted to see other people? He said no but that he felt it wasn’t fair to hold my hear captive while he exercised this time apart. I told him that I was going to let him go and give him all the time he needed and that if he comes back I guess time will tell. He said he understood and so sorry of where he’s at and that he hoped that he didn’t burn down the bridge for when he is confident he can cross it. This was 2 weeks ago. Since them he has texted me a few times to see how I am doing I respond. I miss him. Im so lost what should I do?! Help

  18. fri porno film

    Things that are up awesome blog! Man. Beautiful. Awesome. I’m going to search for your internet site plus take the rss feeds furthermore? I am pleased to find a lot of beneficial information and facts here in the post, we want come up with additional tactics with this consider, thank you for revealing.

  19. get your ex back

    My brother recommended I may like this blog. He was totally right.

    This put up actually made my day. You can not imagine just how so much time I had spent for this information!

    Thank you!
    get your ex back´s last [type] ..get your ex back

  20. Google


    Usually posts some really interesting stuff like this. If you’re new to this site….

  21. I need me a game plan… | The Diane Lee Project

    [...] Matchmaker on Disappearing Men – again, just plain old, good advice [...]

  22. cara

    Thanks for this blog post, it helps to know I’m not alone. This same time last year I was going through what I’m going through now with this same person. He expresses his feelings and gets vulnerable, encourages me to call him more and then drops off the face of the earth. 9 to 15 days later he comes back as if time never stopped. He missed my birthday and new years with me last year and is almost repeating to the day this year. I guess he has emotional problems or something because this is too bazaar. We were doing great. No warning. I won’t call. It’s not gonna happen. If he can’t communicate his issues the he simply is not the man for me. Too bad because we have high compatibility. He’s got 3 more days to contact me and beat my cutoff date. I won’t tolerate another missing of my birthday.

  23. Visit

    Hello there, You may have carried out a fantastic job. I most certainly will surely digg that as well as for me personally recommend to my pals. I know they’re going to be benefited from this page.

  24. Mike

    I have read all the posts here and I do understand how frustrating and often painful the pull back phase can be.

    If you googled ‘The pull back phase” you’ll usually find references to men pulling back. This is because those posts have been written by women as most men aren’t open to expressing their emotions.

    The fact is, women also behave in this way too. Some women pull back too.

  25. Ronald

    I was very pleased to discover this page. I want to to
    thank you for your time just for this fantastic read!!

    I definitely enjoyed every part of it and I have you saved to fav to see new
    stuff on your web site.
    Ronald´s last [type] ..Ronald

  26. remove the blockages

    Woah this kind of web site can be amazing i like learning your posts remove the blockages. Keep the good work! You recognize, a number of people need close to in this data, you can make them significantly.

  27. Saj

    Great article! I just wanted to know if the same applies to ldr? Thanks

  28. ask

    Hey There. I discovered your blog using msn. That is an extremely smartly written article.
    I will be sure to bookmark it and return to learn more of your helpful info.
    Thank you for the post. I’ll certainly comeback.
    ask´s last [type] ..ask

  29. ask

    Thanks for another excellent post. Where else may anybody get that kind of
    info in such a perfect manner of writing? I’ve a presentation next week, and I’m at the look for such information.
    ask´s last [type] ..ask

  30. Kat

    I was reading this article and didn’t even realize who wrote it until the end. I just wish I could have you in my ear 24-7 Miss Heidi. You’re absoltely amazing and so gifted.

Feel free to leave a comment...
and oh, if you want a pic to show with your comment, go get a gravatar!

CommentLuv badge
MySpace Tracker