No matter how strong a relationship is, it’s bound to have its tricky moments. Two people with strong feelings coming together was never going to be easy, and everyone struggles with some aspect of being somebody’s partner (at least some of the time). Naturally, things happen that can make both people in the relationship feel stressed and anxious, and if the situation gets bad enough, ultimately reconsider whether they really want to stay with the other person or not.
A lot of women don’t realize that there are select moments in a standard relationship which cause men to totally freak out.
Men tend to be less skilled at expressing their feelings than women, and usually find it harder to open up, which explains why they can have a total worry session, and their wife or girlfriend doesn’t even know about it.
When things get tough in a relationship, a lot of men suffer in silence. And a few are even driven away completely. So it’s always a good idea to know exactly what relationship moments can cause a guy to secretly freak out. Read on to find out whether you’ve done or are doing something that your partner is probably stressing over!
20When You Start Acting Too Clingy Or Obsessive
You only need to watch How To Lose A Guy in 10 Days to understand that men generally don’t like it when women act too clingy or obsessive. This kind of behavior can turn a man who has feelings for you into a man who doesn’t want a bar of you, and it can also have your partner secretly freaking out in silence.
The main reason why this kind of behavior causes a guy to freak out is that he feels smothered and, if it’s really bad, because it makes him question your emotional stability. Even people who are obsessed with each other need their space and time apart, and he’s not going to suddenly give up all his friends and free time just because he has a girlfriend.
Though it’s natural to want to show somebody that you’re interested in them, acting super clingy and obsessed will more than likely do more harm than good.
Women can sometimes get to a point where they’re acting obsessive without even noticing it, because they’re genuinely infatuated and want to spend every waking moment with the person they love. But if that’s you and you don’t give him a little space, he’s probably going to stress out.
19The First Time You Lose Your Cool
Anger is a part of life, and even the calmest of people reach their breaking point every now and then. Sure, some people get there more often than others do, but it’s part of human nature to get angry. The unfortunate thing is it’s never easy to watch someone lose their cool, especially if you’re thinking about spending your life with that person. Anger can come with banging doors and nasty words, and is generally not a comfortable emotion to witness. The first time you watch your partner lose their temper or get really angry can be pretty confronting, so it’s easy to see why a lot of guys freak out about this relationship moment.
Unlike a few of the other things on this list, getting angry isn’t really something you can control. As long as you’re human, you’re prone to a range of emotions and even if you employ the very best techniques, you can’t avoid them forever. The only thing you can do is make sure you talk about your feelings so they don’t bubble over and create a huge explosion. And once the anger has passed, make sure you say sorry for anything you need to say sorry for.
18You Might Think It’s A Good Time To Expect Commitment, But That Doesn’t Mean He Does
Generally, men are portrayed as trying to avoid commitment in relationships for as long as they can, while women are expected to chase and force it. This isn’t always the case, as there are plenty of women uncomfortable with committing just like there are lots of men who are ready for it. That said, asking for commitment is a big step for anybody, and if you’re not at the stage where you are ready for it, that’s a pretty overwhelming experience.
So if you try to get your guy to commit too early, before he’s ready, you could totally freak him out.
Sometimes, asking for commitment can be as straightforward as it sounds. When people want promises from their partner, they might just verbally ask for it. But there are also other ways to put pressure on somebody to commit to you, such as giving them titles that you haven’t discussed. For instance, it’s probably not a good idea to refer to somebody as your boyfriend unless you’ve had that discussion. He might think of you as his girlfriend, but if he doesn’t, you risk coming on too strong, freaking him out and scaring him off.
It’s always a good idea to talk things through with your partner first so you know exactly where they stand before taking any steps in your relationship.
17He Can Get Worried The First Time You Show Him How Jealous You Are
Just like an angry person is no fun to be around, a jealous person can also make others feel uncomfortable. Acting overly jealous and possessive of somebody might seem like it’s flattering, but it can actually make them feel like they’ve been backed against the wall or they’ve lost an element of their freedom. Of course, it’s natural to feel some amount of jealousy over somebody you’re interested in, and a little playfulness in that way can actually keep the relationship fresh and interesting. But he might get worried if he catches you acting too jealous.
Jealousy can be insulting if the other person has gone out of their way to make you feel like you can trust them. So if he’s never given you a reason to doubt his word, it’s insulting that you’d still ask to look through his phone or for him to let you know exactly where he is at all times.
Though it can be hard if you’re struggling with insecurity, getting an attitude when he hangs out with his friends or family, or when he talks to other girls, is another sure way to freak him out. Nobody wants to live with somebody breathing down their neck.
16It Could Worry Him If You Start Fishing For Compliments
A man who has his wits about him is likely to worry any time his partner shows him that they’re incredibly insecure. If you’ve been around, you know that insecure people can be toxic and can even bring the energy of those around them down. So it makes sense that anything you do which reveals that you’re super insecure could have him freaking out and wondering what else you might do because of your insecurity.
One sign that somebody is totally insecure is when they go out of their way to fish for compliments from other people.
Basically, people who actively seek out compliments from other people seem completely insecure because they are hungry for validation and approval from others. What this means is that their own opinions of themselves aren’t enough; they need other people to make them feel good about themselves, relaying how little they value their own thoughts or how negative their own thoughts must be.
Any sign that points to you being too insecure could make him freak out. A little insecurity is expected, but when it’s taken to extreme levels and starts to mess with your behavior, the other person could question the relationship.
15When You Mention Your Ex-Boyfriend A Little Too Often
Sooner or later, you’re going to have to open the ex-files when you get into a relationship. It’s up to individual couples how much they choose to disclose about their past lives, but generally, you should at least let your partner know the basics. Some people get super comfortable and start talking about their exes a little too much, and that can understandably freak guys out for several reasons. Not only does constant talking about an ex indicate that you’re still thinking about them, but it could also mean that you still have feelings for them. Alternatively, trash-talking an ex points to the fact that you had a hard break up, which is all the more reason for your new partner to panic.
If you have nothing but nice things to say about an ex, your boyfriend could be the one who’s starting to feel jealous, wondering whether they still have your heart or not. But although it seems like negative talk makes it look like you have no feelings for an old lover, it shows that you might be a tough person to break up with. Either way, talking too much about an ex raises alarm bells for a new partner, and should probably be avoided.
14He’ll See Red Flags If You Trash-Talk Other Women
We learn a lot about our partners not just from the way they interact with us, but from observing the way they act with other people. So it’s only natural that your partner would form conclusions about you based on how they see you acting and talking with others. When it comes to interacting with other women, in particular, your partner could easily freak out if you resort to mean behavior and trash-talking.
Acting hostile towards other women can be a clear sign that someone is jealous or insecure, which are both red flags for men.
It’s uncomfortable for most people to witness conflict or for them to watch somebody they care about be aggressive with others, so there’s a good chance this kind of behavior could make him second-guess his relationship with you.
Not all conflict stems from jealousy or insecurity, and of course, there are times when you have a reason to be angry with other women. You don’t have to lie about your feelings and make yourself seem like you’re super easy going (to the point of being a doormat), but there are less aggressive and confronting ways to deal with someone who’s upset you rather than trash-talking.
13When He Realizes You’re Actually High Maintenance
At the beginning of a relationship, people might put up certain facades that they think make them seem more loveable, and hide their true behaviors until they have the other person hooked, so to speak. It’s fine and natural to want to avoid coming on too strong, so if you are someone who happens to be a little vain or materialistic, there’s nothing wrong with not telling him how many maintenance appointments you go to a week on the first date. And as the relationship grows stronger, you’ll both learn more about each other and he’ll work out for himself that you have weekly appointments for waxing, laser, manicure, pedicure, facial, massage and blowouts (no judgment here!).
You can’t change who you are, and honestly, we don’t think you should apologize for being a little high maintenance. But if he wasn’t expecting it, finding that out might briefly cause him to freak out. That’s why you should never outwardly lie in the beginning, even if you don’t disclose all the details. You should never stop being yourself to accommodate for someone else, so if he’s meant to be with you, he’ll find a way to be okay with who you are. He just might be a little overwhelmed in the process!
12It Can Be Confronting When You Expect Him To Pay
There was a time when women paying for themselves on dates was totally unheard of. Though that sounds romantic and dreamy to some women, keep in mind that this was also a time when women were expected to forget about education and careers and dedicate their lives to raising babies and cleaning up after husbands instead. It’s a two-way street. Because times have changed, a guy might be a little taken aback if you still expect him to fork out money for the bill every single time.
To be clear, there’s nothing wrong with offering to pay for someone you’re interested in. It’s a lovely gesture and wins a lot of points with a lot of women.
It’s okay to accept gifts and dinners when they’re offered, but expecting it is a different story.
Especially in cultures where splitting the bill or taking it in turns is the norm, a man could freak out if you insist that paying should fall on him.
This might be a more traditional approach, but it could send out signals that you’re a gold-digger or a freeloader (and that could send him running in the other direction). Once upon a time, it was accepted, but thankfully, times have changed.
11The First Time You Go Through A Dry Patch
It’s no secret that men are interested in the physical side of the relationship. It is a secret to some that women are interested in the physical side too, but that’s another story. Going through a dry patch in a relationship isn’t easy for anyone involved, but it happens. And when it does happen, it’s natural that he’ll freak out a little.
You don’t have to interpret his freaking out that you’re going through a dry patch as a sign that he only wants one thing from you. Instead, he’s likely to worry when this happens because he might be wondering about what it means for your relationship overall. If things slow down in one room of the house, does that mean that they’re slowing down in all the other rooms too? When it comes to getting physical, what happens between you can be a reflection of what’s going on in the wider relationship, so it’s only natural that he’d be concerned if things were to cool down considerably in this department.
People go through dry patches for different reasons, so there’s no one universal way to fix them. But what you can do to ease some of his worrying is talk about it and let him know that it doesn’t mean you’re planning on walking out.
10When You Try To Go Public With The Relationship Before He’s Ready
Going public with a new relationship is always a big deal. Even when you want to do it and you’re ready for it, it can still be overwhelming because it’s a huge change from having everybody you know believing that you’re single. If you decide to make the relationship public knowledge before he’s ready, he’s probably going to freak out about it.
This one is easy to understand. If you had your own reasons for not wanting people to know about your new relationship yet, it would be pretty confronting to have your new partner suddenly tell people without your consent.
And though not wanting to go public can help to disguise someone who’s not faithful, there are lots of good reasons why someone would want to wait to let the people in their lives know that they’re seeing someone new. It could be because his family is strict and overbearing, or because his friends won’t stop hounding him with questions, or even because he’s a private person who doesn’t want to have everybody knowing his business.
There are ways to take the relationship public which are more discreet but could still freak him out. Things like posting too many pictures together will let people know what’s going on, even if you never say a word.
9The First Time He Meets Your Family Or Friends
Most people agree that one of the most daunting aspects of any new relationship is meeting the family and friends for the very first time. There are so many things running through your head when it’s time to take this step—you worry about whether you’re going to make a good impression, whether they’re going to be nice people, whether they’re going to think you’re good for their friend or child, whether it’s going to go smoothly, etc. It’s a huge deal! And because of that, it’s likely that he’s going to freak out when you get to this stage, even if he doesn’t let on.
At this point, we should clear up that not all freak out attacks are bad. Life, in general, is scary, and relationships are like roller coasters that can leave your stomach up in your throat, even if they’re going along perfectly. There’s nothing wrong with stressing out when you have to meet someone’s family or friends for the first time, but know that it does happen.
A lot of the time, there’s nothing you can do or say to completely erase these kinds of nerves. All you can do is support the other person and make them feel as welcome as possible while they’re freaking out.
8When You Show Him You’re Not Flexible
Being flexible in a relationship is one of the most sought-after qualities. When it comes to looking for a partner, people highly rate the ability to let loose and go with the flow. Though there are situations in which someone with a more controlling, Type A personality fares better, generally people who are easy-going tend to be more enjoyable to be around. If you lead him to think that you’re chilled and stress-free and then you show him that you’re not, he could stress out about it.
What are some ways to show him that you’re not as chilled as he thinks you are? Being hesitant to change plans is one.
He could get the idea that you’re a difficult person to get along with overall if you can’t handle it when small details don’t go to plan.
If you’re especially rigid and don’t keep an open mind when it comes to trying new things or meeting him halfway when it’s time to compromise, the same thing is likely to happen.
To be more flexible, you have to be willing to make compromises. It can be hard if you have an anxious personality but letting things go and adjusting to life as it comes eases a lot of strain in relationships
7If You Take On The Role Of Damsel In Distress
Traditionally, men have been seen as chasers, hunters, and protectors while women have been seen as those who need to be chased, hunted (in a way) and protected. If Disney is anything to go by, women should be locked in towers and sleeping in glass coffins, and men should be fighting off evil witches and coming to the rescue as heroes. Some people find that kind of thing romantic, but in this day and age, acting like a damsel in distress is more likely to put him under stress than it is to make him feel like a hero.
For starters, a lot of men don’t feel like the strong heroes that society wants them to be, so to have a partner expecting them to reach that standard can be intimidating to say the least. In the same way that you’d probably be uncomfortable with a man expecting you to be traditionally feminine and quiet and obedient, he’d probably be uncomfortable being expected to be super manly.
Even if he does like playing the hero, having to drop everything to save a damsel all the time would be annoying. It’s okay to rely on your partner when you need it, but collapsing and demanding that he sort out all your problems for you is likely to irk him sooner or later.
6When He Realizes You Want Different Things
One of the biggest hurdles to a successful relationship, and usually the ultimate deal-breaker, is when both people just want separate things. You can get along well, make each other laugh and bring each other happiness, but if you want to go in two different directions, it’s hard to make it work. Love and compatibility seem to mean a whole lot less when one person has dreams of starting a family and the other has dreams of living out of a suitcase.
So if it comes to a point where he realizes that he’s on a totally different page to you, it’s understandable that he’d freak out. This is a huge moment because it could mean that things are going to be totally different from what you thought they were going to be.
If you have different goals, it could mean that you’re just not going to work out as a couple.
Having completely different life goals doesn’t have to mean that a relationship is doomed, but it sure makes it a lot harder. Obviously, if you do stay together, both people could have to make sacrifices to give each other what they want, and that could lead to resentment later down the road.
5If You Try To Compete With Him Rather Than Support Him
Like jealousy, there’s room for just a little healthy rivalry in a strong relationship. Sometimes, competing with each other can keep you both motivated and also lets the other person know that you care about them and what they do. If the rivalry you have is like this and keeps things fun and exciting, you don’t have anything to worry about. But if it’s a serious rivalry that sees you competing with him at every chance you get, it could make him feel uncomfortable.
One of the best things you get from a relationship is support, and that usually makes all the work and time and effort that goes into the relationship worth it. So it’s a pretty rotten deal to make compromises to be with someone and then find out they’re not going to give you the support that you want and deserve. That could make a man really resentful towards you, and even get to the point where he’s second-guessing your relationship.
Constantly competing with someone else is no picnic, either. Even if you’re a competitive person, it’s hard work to always worry about what someone else is doing and feel like you have to be better than them. Life is stressful enough without the extra worry!
4When You Act Entitled Without Giving Anything Back
Acting too entitled in a relationship can not only cause your partner to freak out, but it can be the move you make that totally destroys what you have. The truth is that no matter how much you love someone, it’s really hard to put up with them if they expect to be treated like a star. If you start acting entitled, he’ll probably start worrying about the state of your relationship, and whether you’re really what he wants for the future.
Of course, it’s natural to be doted upon when someone adores you. And for many people, relationships are about giving things and taking things. There’s a good chance that your partner spoils you and that’s completely okay. Things get worrying when you aren’t interested in returning any of that treatment back upon your partner.
Relationships always have been and always will be a two-way street.
Expecting gifts and expecting your partner’s time and energy when you aren’t prepared to give anything back lets your partner know that the relationship is going to be hard work. At the end of the day, there aren’t too many people who want to stick around through that. Just asking him if he needs help, or how his day is going shows that you’re just as interested in looking out for him as he is in looking out for you.
3The Time You Show Him How Negative You Are
Too much negativity is a warning sign to most people. Those who are overly negative or pessimistic can be unpleasant to be around and tend to drag down the mood. If you are a negative person, hide it for the first few weeks or months and then slowly reveal it, you could leave your partner very confused and possibly second-guessing whether he actually wants to be with you or not.
We can all be negative sometimes, but consistent, endless negative behaviors are a lot for anybody to handle. This can come in the form of a constant bad attitude and always expecting the worst from everybody and everything, and it can also be always putting yourself and others down. It’s easy to slip into these kinds of habits over time, and it’s tricky to monitor everything you say and think. Because of that, you might be a negative person without even realizing it.
There are ways to stop being negative if you think you’re turning into a bit of a Nelly. Trying hard to focus on the positive elements of your life and things to be grateful for is a huge and powerful step towards being a happier, more optimistic person.
2He’ll Be Confused If You Send Too Many Mixed Messages
Mind games are a no-no in any healthy relationship. Playing around with someone’s mind isn’t funny or fair, and once they work out what’s really going on, they’re likely to have second thoughts about you. There’s a good chance he’ll be concerned and confused if you start sending him mixed messages and playing mind games with him to see how much he really wants you. Though it’s true that some guys will persist through anything, the majority of men would eventually lose interest in someone who’s obviously messing around with them.
While purposely playing mind games clearly harms a relationship, it’s also possible that you’re hurting your relationship by sending mixed signals and not even realizing it.
Mixed messages can include pushing him away one minute and being desperate for him the next, and leaning on him sometimes and telling him to keep his distance other times. All these things confuse him because they muddle up your feelings. Do you want him or not? The longer he can’t tell, the more likely it is that he’ll just assume you’re not interested and move onto the next one.
We all go through mood swings, so it’s a good idea to be honest with him when you can and let him know that you don’t mean to play games.
1When It’s Obvious You Don’t Have Any Chemistry
Chemistry is one of the biggest factors that determines whether a relationship will be successful or not. Sometimes people can match up perfectly on paper and then discover that something still isn’t clicking. They can have similar interests, have a lot of mutual friends, share the same beliefs on different things and even find each other physically attractive, but that doesn’t mean they’ll hit it off. Chemistry is the one part of the relationship you can’t control and if you don’t have it, you can’t fake it.
Though a lot of people get a sense straight away whether they have a connection with somebody else or not, some people get tricked because they are so good together in theory. They think it’s going to work out because the other person ticks all these different boxes for them, but then they get a couple of months into the relationship and realize that, actually, they don’t have that spark. And if a guy comes to that point, there’s a good chance he’s going to be disappointed.
Relationships don’t have to end when there’s no chemistry—plenty of people stay in relationships that work out for convenience but are without passion. Only you know if you’d be willing to put up with that. In most cases, a lack of spark, chemistry, connection or whatever you want to call it is a deal-breaker, and totally devastating.