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Wondering Why SHE Has Emotionally Pulled Away?

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


One minute your relationship appears to be going great until she becomes distant....

When a woman becomes distant—not responding to your text messages as quickly, is too busy to see you, is more quiet in your presence than normal, and sex starts to fade out of your relationship—she's becoming disinterested. Why does this happen? Generally she is not feeling emotionally connected to you or feeling supported by you.

Women are not as complicated as a man might think.

When we pull away emotionally and sexually it's because we are feeling disconnected. And, if this disconnect becomes too far gone to repair we will pull away to the point of NO return—aka...a permanent pause, break-up or divorce.

Emotionally connecting with a guy means there is trust—spiritually, emotionally, physically, and mentally—that we are feeling. When that trust (and security) of being on the same future path is emotionally disrupted or completely changes, then so does our emotional connection. So men, why does this happen?

This can happen when we feel:

  • We are not being heard—when we talk about things that are important to us and you are not listening or taking the time to remember (keeping it logged in your brain or writing it down).
  • You attack our character—you say things negative about us—you're either serious or "claim" you are joking.
  • You have too much "stuff" going on—when you see us you are preoccupied or too tired.
  • Insufficient support—when there is something emotionally or physically going on in our life you are not there for us.
  • You're unable to provide—for us and/or family.
  • You lack passion—you're fine being in a job that you are unhappy with and have no goals for changing the situation.
  • Communication lessens—you brush things off and don't talk about what's bothering you.
  • You undersell yourself—it's more important for you to please others so much that you end up letting people take advantage of you.
  • You don't validate our feelings—you think we are too emotional or over reactive.
  • You've become complacent and too comfortable—you never take the time to plan dates or look nice (dress sloppy, don't man-scape anymore, nose and ear hair out of control, etc.).
  • We don’t feel sexually desired by you—you rarely hold our hand or grab us and kiss us passionately. We are initiating sex more then you.
  • The romance/courting has tremendously lessened or completely stopped—you no longer do the little things, no flowers, cards, gifts, forgetting birthdays, Valentine's Day, anniversary, etc.
  • You don't create boundaries—for yourself and others—causing unnecessary stress in your life.
  • You have stopped connecting sexually—sex has become something to "do" versus pleasure—no foreplay for us.
  • You lack drive—you are fine being comfortable versus striving for success.
  • You talk about finances too much—insufficient (not sexy) or how much you have (arrogant).
  • Lack goals—for improving yourself, your future and us.
  • Inconsistency in your actions—one minute you are all about us and the next minute you seem disinterested and distant.
  • We do not feel valued—the future that we thought you claimed you saw in us doesn't match with your actions.
  • We are not a priority—you put other things WAY before us—work, kid(s), sporting activities, friends, hobbies, etc.—rarely having time to see us.
  • You have a wondering eye—you have either cheated or we feel you want to.

Becoming emotionally disconnected doesn't happen overnight for women...

When we try to express our concerns or talk to a guy about the things that are upsetting us and nothing changes, we will talk to him again (and again and possibly again)—in hopes he will one day improve the situation. Unfortunately, instead of listening, fully hearing us, taking any ownership, and working on making the issue better, he will label us; nagging, bossy, controlling or bitchy. Ladies, this not a win-win situation for us—so then when all else fails we emotionally pull back.

What I find amusingly interesting is men will question why we "suddenly seem different"—claiming that they don't understand. Duh...of course not, you didn't care enough to listen or pay attention.

Men and women are different…

So often we want to believe men and women are the same. In some regards that is true, however depending on the person there might be even more things that are similar. Here’s the thing, most men and women are different and therefor it's important to take the time to understand your partner.

Yes, many women wear their emotions on their sleeves, but are they more emotional than men who keep things internally balled up and never fully express how they feel? NO. It is absolutely healthier to talk about your feeling versus keeping them in. Not expressing how you feel will lead you down the path to women who will end up emotionally pulling away from you. Let's keep it real, who wants to deal with an emotional ticking time bomb?

If you do not communicate when you are upset, eventually what you're feeling will come out—either through a health issue or at an inappropriate time and place—yelling at something that will have nothing to do with why you were originally upset. Yikes! I get that even when a man is upset he can still have sex, however for most women, not the case.

Yes, most men can still have sex—regardless if they are upset with a woman or feel disconnected from her. It's easy, for them since men relate to the act of sex differently than most women. A guy can have sex and not have an emotional attachment, whereas women usually have an attachment and therefore have a difficult time separating the two. In our eyes emotions and sex go hand in hand. Women are emotionally sexually motivated.

When we feel emotionally disconnected it's hard for us to be turned on sexually.

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Here's the thing guys, when an issue arises and we talk to you and there is no change, we feel you are not validating us. And if you do hear us and make us believe things will be different, just because we have sex with you doesn't mean that everything is immediately resolved. Depending on the emotional disconnect we felt will determine the length of time it will be before we feel one hundred percent emotionally secure again with you. Basically we need to see consistency in your actions, not just words.

I dated a guy who was passive aggressive. He would claim he was "hearing" me when I was sharing things about myself—important events or plans we had. But, he wasn't and his disinterest got old quick when I realized he didn't care enough about me or our relationship to be fully present when I spoke. How could I possibly see a future with a guy who seemed more interested in my cooking and having sex with me than getting to know me?

Caring about someone means not only emotionally connecting, but also protecting their heart.

I tried to talk to him—on many occasions about why I was feeling disconnected from him, but things never changed. He got complacent—thinking that because we were together he didn't need to work on 'keeping me." By the time he realized I had pulled away, I was so emotionally guarded (and done with him) to the point that there was no undoing his blatant lack and disregard for me.

Guys, if you truly care or possibly love a woman (genuinely love her) don't let your ego get in the way from showing her. Fully listening to her, support her, and be there for her. Love is more than just words, it’s also taking action—and so often this gets forgotten. And, it’s not just about spanning time with her, it's about sustaining an emotional connection.

Bottom line, work hard to keep the emotional connection that brought you together in the first place. Never get too comfortable or too busy to show her how much you care—and that she is important to you. Remember, emotionally pulling away for a woman is much more than an attitude, it means she is emotionally disconnected and might want out of the relationship. Tune in...BEFORE she permanently tunes out.



Vika on February 22, 2019:

Wow, thanks for good article

ashley on July 11, 2018:

Thanks for the atticle i ddnt n what to do before but now i understand beta u open ma eyes

realtalk247 on June 09, 2018:

Great article. The emotional disconnect is so real when you're moving in the direction of ending the relationship.

Chrissy on January 25, 2018:

Another reason women pull away is when men keep things superficial and the relationship is not going anywhere. So the guard goes up and if he doesn't act on it, we simply give up and move on.

Stephanie Bailey (author) from Denver on June 14, 2016:

Robert, Thank you for reading and for your feedback. All support is appreciated, but please keep in mind that my articles are directed towards the view point of women. Hope you keep reading! Have a great day.

Robert on June 14, 2016:

This is an excellent essay, really. A perfect outline of archetypal expectations of a mortal woman… And yes, such a dream man must exist… together with his Muse. Are you the one? Great essay indeed, however, it lacks the collaborative perspective of the two... ☺ We too have our expectations, desires and needs: -) Write to me:

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