Why Did He Act Excited About Me If He Didn’t Want to Be My Boyfriend?

I am a 44-year old, highly educated woman who can say that throughout my life I have been able to quasi-understand and respect men and their behaviors. However, I started seeing someone most recently, and I am baffled by the development. Usually, I would just move on and try not psychoanalyzing what happened. However, in this case, may be because I liked the guy very much and thought that the feelings were mutual, I wish that I could have a crystal ball (YOU :)) to just answer one question: Do guys say “you take my breath away”, “I want to see you”, “I want to hold you”, but cannot commit to a relationship (all this was in his last text), just because they do not want to hurt your feelings?  Some background info:  We have worked together for a year but started seeing each other last month.  I can say with full certainty that I felt very quickly emotionally, psychologically, intellectually, and physically connected with him. (My evaluation – too fast and too strong – I get it!!!). I have a very strong degree of self-control and all my life I have never let myself really “go for it” without having some degree of inhibition. I never felt the need to inhibit myself with him, and I think that’s what made it important to me.  I believe the connection was mutual because of what he said, what he did, his behavior, and the way he looked at me (As I said above – I am highly educated and very cortical, thus not someone who would act based on some rudimentary emotional reaction).  Since we started seeing each other, we would text every morning to say good morning, every 3-4 hours to say “miss you” or “thinking of you”, or send an emoji to convey that same message, and every night before going to bed to wish each other good night. Communication was smart, with very fine sense of humor, and right dose of playfulness and sexual innuendos. Communication was mostly via text because we did not want to draw attention at work.  We never slept together because we wanted to make sure it would last. His own words, “we should be each other’s icing on the cake of a great life.” We kissed however, and no doubt, the chemistry was amazing.  One day, four weeks in, he texted me at 7:30 am saying: “Morning, can hardly wait for lunch”, followed by another one two hours later asking me where I wanted to go for lunch. I was very surprised when, what I thought would be just a lunch, turned out to be “let’s stop this.”  His reason was the fact that we are both in senior management at the organization and he did not want to jeopardize that. As an executive, I can appreciate that. I also want to say that whatever this was, it’s over, and I am not trying to find reasons to go back. Nevertheless, since I really cared about this guy, I wish I could somehow know if I read his involvement the wrong way.  

Thank you and best regards,  


Sorry about your disappointment, Francesca.

You do sound like a bright woman and I know, rationally, it’s hard to take this at face value.

But as I wrote in Why He Disappeared, it doesn’t actually MATTER why he disappeared.

Ready for Lasting Love?
Ready for Lasting Love?

If everything is exactly as you describe it, then he didn’t want to sleep with another employee, which may be disappointing, but prudent.

My guess — for what it’s worth — is that if I asked him to describe this unusual four-week courtship, he’d probably tell a similar story with a few different details.

Listen, it’s possible that he’s just that cautious, but, in my opinion:

-a man who is truly interested in you will do more than text during the work day.

-a man who is truly interested in you rarely holds back from pushing forward sexually.

-a man who is truly interested in you does not let work get in the way — if anything, he is more likely to discuss your relationship with you to figure out how to pull it off while minimizing risk.

A man who is truly interested in you does not let work get in the way.

But the one paragraph that really suggested to me that you don’t have a clear grasp on the situation (or men) was this one:Which would lead me to believe, in doing the post-mortem on your non-relationship, that your chemistry wasn’t as strong as you believed and the feelings he expressed by text were impulsive trial balloons that didn’t actually fly.

Do guys say “you take my breath away”, “I want to see you”, “I want to hold you”, but cannot commit to a relationship, just because they do not want to hurt your feelings?  


They say those things in the moment because that’s what they feel in the moment.


What they say when they don’t want to hurt your feelings is “Let’s stop this because we work together in the same office.”

It’s a lie, but it does down easier than the truth, which is that he just isn’t that into you.

When men are into you, they’ll move heaven and earth to make it happen.

When men are into you, they’ll move heaven and earth to make it happen.

Next time, pay attention to his effort to escalate things, make plans with you, and ask you to be his girlfriend. All are better reflections of a man’s feelings than a series of one-liners and emojis.

And if you’re still curious why men do not stick around after the first few weeks of dating, click here and I’ll explain it all.