HBO
Steph Barnes
December 14, 2016 7:11 am

Let’s face it, when dealing with matters of the heart, we don’t always make wise choices. It’s okay, we’ve all been there. Sometimes we notice the changes but ignore the signs — you know the ones, those giant signs screaming “emotionally unavailable”. It’s like all of a sudden, our brain gets left out of the conversation, logical thinking goes out the window, and we somehow end up believing it’s our fault the people we’re dating just won’t commit. Don’t worry: it’s seriously not you. It’s really them. They’re emotionally unavailable and a lot of the time they don’t even realize it. Sounds like all the makings of a good romantic comedy, huh?

Yeah, maybe on screen, but in real life, this kind of “falling for someone who was never in the right place to be in love” thing is arguably the worst scenario in the world. And since we all value our hearts, and only want to invest in relationships that are actually going to give us what we want and deserve, it would be so much better if we could see the signs someone isn’t truly available ahead of time.

So, if you’re wondering whether or not the person you’re dating is in fact emotionally unavailable, here are some signs to look out for.

1 Excuses, excuses, excuses!

Trying to make concrete plans with an emotionally unavailable person can sometimes feel like searching for a needle in a haystack. Be on the look out for responses like “Can I let you know?” or “Okay, but let me confirm later…” Spoiler alert: they won’t confirm. Then comes the excuses, they’ll probably be too busy, too tired, stressed at worked, or stuck on an island in the middle of nowhere. Whatever the reason, all the excuses simply mean they’re not open to investing in something long-term. Move on!

2 They insist on “keepin’ it light”

Being able to laugh together and talk about silly, superficial things are important parts of most relationships. However, if your partner is only focused on making you laugh and not trying to form a real connection based on emotional experiences, he/she may have a hard time committing.

3 They’re a little too charming.

Since they’re all about keeping things light and easy be sure to watch out for the fake deep flattery. Emotionally unavailable people are often good with words and adept at appearing completely captivated, and ready to build with you. When in reality, they’re focused on the *feel good* honeymoon stage of the relationship. It’s about the chase! And appearing open and vulnerable is a part of the act.

4 They’re constantly talking about their exes.

Pay attention to how often your new beau talks about their old flame. If they’ve just gotten out of a relationship, it’s possible they may still be in love with their ex and you could just be providing an emotional band-aid. Someone who’s emotionally entangled with a past love won’t be able to give you what you deserve.

5 They’re inconsistent!

Much like that Katy Perry song, they’re hot then they’re cold, they’re yes then they’re no, they’re in then they’re out! Dealing with an emotionally unavailable love is bound to bring inconsistency. You’ll notice sometimes their words won’t match their actions and vice versa. And who has the time?

6 They are perfectionists.

Aiming for perfection usually brings positive results so being a perfectionist isn’t necessarily a bad thing. But in the case of someone who’s not in touch with themselves emotionally, perfectionism could be just an excuse to get out of a relationship. They’ll be too busy searching for your tiniest character flaw and the closest exit to notice anything else.

7 It’s easy for them to quickly cut people out of their lives.

Listen! For the sake of your own sanity and inner peace we strongly recommend cutting toxic people out of your life. But it’s different for emotionally stunted individuals. They pride themselves on being fiercely independent and not needing anyone, so it takes very little for them to cut you out of their lives. Check their track record with past lovers and friends then decide if you want to stick around.

8 They’re always blaming someone else!

Accountability? What accountability? Your emotionless bae won’t take responsibility for their own mistakes because pointing fingers is just so much easier.

As the great Maya Angelou said:

If someone is emotionally unavailable, the signs will be there, they may even say things like “I’m just not ready for a relationship.” So, do yourself a favor and listen. We know it might be tough but trying to fix someone who’s unwilling to change is more trouble than it’s worth.

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