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Is Someone Pushing You Away? 23 Signs, Why They Push & What To Do

You’re in a relationship, but now you are feeling that things are off. So, what are the signs someone is pushing you away? Here’s what you need to know.

signs someone is pushing you away

Your relationship has been going well. You see your partner often. You are affectionate and loving towards each other, what’s wrong with that? Nothing! But you’ve noticed a change in your partner. Could it be the signs someone is pushing you away?

Something feels a little off. You’re not quite sure what it is. Maybe they’re just stressed with work or exams. Or maybe it’s something else.

Why would someone push you away all of a sudden? Why would they behave that way? Is it your fault? Are there any signs? We’ll get to all of that here.

Now, you don’t want to jump to conclusions right away without looking at the right signs. If you notice more than a couple of these signs in your relationship, your partner could be pushing you away.

It’s not what anyone wants to hear, but you must find out what’s going on.

[Read: Here’s how to recognize if your partner is emotionally distant and what to do about it]

The subtle but very obvious signs someone is pushing you away 

If you think your partner is pushing you away, then it’s time you spoke up. We know you don’t want to address it, who honestly does? There’s always the fear of them breaking up with you, but how can you stay with them if they’re treating you like this?

It’s a tough spot to be in, but you need to take care of yourself. So, before talking to them, look at these signs someone is pushing you away to help you get a better idea of what may be going on.

1. There’s no more affection

Now, we’re not talking about sex. We’re assuming that whatever was happening in the bedroom has completely stopped.

But now, your partner isn’t even touching you. There’s no hugging, no kissing, no nothing. Once the affection has stopped, then you know something is going on. [Read: A lack of affection in a relationship – Is it time to walk away?]

2. They don’t listen to you

When you talk to them, they don’t really seem like they’re listening.

Before, when you would tell them about your day, they would take an interest. But now, it seems like a huge inconvenience to them to even hear what you have to say.

3. They avoid you

You call them, but it takes them hours to call you back. And when you do get a hold of them, there’s not much of a conversation.

You ask to hang out, but there’s always a reason as to why they can’t. If they’re avoiding you, it’s clearly one of the signs someone is pushing you away, and one that you need to investigate. [Read: How to handle the sting of resentment in a relationship and overcome it]

4. You’ve suddenly become forced to read minds

Your partner used to tell you how they were feeling and things going on in their life, but now, you’ve been forced to become a mind reader.

You spend your time trying to guess what they’re thinking and why they’re feeling that way. This isn’t a good sign. No relationship should make you feel like you need to read their mind. 

5. You feel something’s changed

You can’t put your finger on it, but you know something is up. When you’re around them, you don’t feel the love and affection you once shared, and that’s a big problem.

No matter what you do or how you try to make them feel good, nothing seems to work. It’s not you; it’s them. [Read: 16 signs he doesn’t like you anymore and is slowly losing interest in you]

6. They no longer communicate with you

You are still talking, barely, and when you do talk, it’s very shallow. They’re no longer telling you about the personal things going on in their life; instead, they keep the conversation very basic and simple. It makes you wonder why. As much as this hurts, this is one of the big signs someone is pushing you away.

7. They spend more time alone

Well, at least that’s what they tell you. Whenever you check in with them, they’re always doing something on their own.

Now, this wouldn’t be strange if they were always like this, but they weren’t. They changed recently, and something is going on.

8. You bicker a lot

You’re not sure what the argument was even about, and it keeps happening again and again. Whatever you say, they rip it apart and find a way to get angry at you. They’re clearly frustrated about something and taking it out on you. [Read: Are relationship fights normal? 15 signs you’re fighting too much]

9. They’re into their phones

You would almost never look at your phones when hanging out together. But now, you can’t get your partner to get off their phone; it’s like they’re glued to it. And if this has become something that’s suddenly happened, you need to ask what’s going on.

10. They ask for a break

Well, if someone asks to go on a break, they’re basically waiting to break up with you. Sometimes, people ask their significant other for a break because they don’t know how to break up with them.

So, if they ask for a break and you’ve seen other signs they’re pushing you away, the relationship is probably coming to an end. [Read: The beginning of the end – What is a break in a relationship exactly?]

11. They keep their distance

They used to come over and hang out with you during the week, but now, they’re suddenly too busy to spend time with you.

They don’t send you good morning text messages either, everything has been pulled back drastically… there’s a good reason for that – they’re pushing you away.

12. They seem like they’re off in another world

When you’re around them, they’re not in the moment with you. Instead, their mind is off in a completely different world.

They’re zoning out and looking like they have their mind on something or someone else. What’s going on? [Read: The 20 revealing signs you might be growing apart in your relationship]

13. They blame you for everything

You didn’t know you could make so many mistakes without actually doing anything, but this is what happens when someone’s too weak to break up with you, so they try to push you away instead.

They blame you for everything and anything. They’re trying to find an out without confronting you.

Why would someone be pushing you away?

When you’re in a relationship, it’s difficult to comprehend why someone would push their significant other away. And in general, the people who are doing the pushing aren’t avoiding intimacy with you because they don’t like you or want to be left completely alone.

So, why does someone push you away? Well, there are a variety of reasons this might happen. Now that you know the signs someone is pushing you away, here are some of the reasons why they may be doing it. [Read: Why men pull away – their reasoning and your response]

1. You hurt them in some way

When you see the signs someone is pushing you away, usually your first instinct would be to blame yourself. Did you do something? Did you hurt them in some way?

Of course, it’s not always your fault, as you’ll see in the reasons below. But sometimes, there is an off chance that you said or did something that hurt their feelings. And instead of confronting you about it, they’ve receded into a shell and are just pushing you away instead *usually, to hurt you for the pain you caused them!*

Giving someone the silent treatment is childish and even manipulative. [Read: Why the silent treatment is bad and how to do it the right way]

But if you do believe you may have done something recently that hurt them, sit down with them and talk about it. Of course, they’ll deny it at first, but eventually, they may open up as well and talk about their real feelings. An easy happy ending!

But then again, it’s not always this smooth and easy. Sometimes, someone could push you away because of their own issues, as we’ll see in the rest of the reasons below.

2. Fear of intimacy

Some people are just uncomfortable with intimacy. And because of this, they develop avoidance as a defense mechanism against people so they don’t get hurt when they’re in a relationship.

Maybe they had a bad experience in a previous relationship *or more than one*, and they think they have healed from it.

But, subconsciously, they are still worried about being rejected, so their actions of pushing you away just linger on in your relationship with them. It’s almost as if it’s an instinct that takes over them.

Now, this is not necessarily a conscious choice on their part. It’s not like they’re thinking, “Okay, I need to take action to push this person away because I’m afraid of getting hurt, so I’m protecting myself this way.”

Instead, their behaviors are usually unconscious. They might start arguments or display any of the other signs of pushing away because they feel the need to protect themselves. [Read: Fear of intimacy – The hardships of being afraid of love]

3. Emotional attachment problems

There are different attachment styles that most people have. And if someone is pushing you away, then they might have what’s called an avoidant attachment style.

In other words, they avoid emotional attachments with other people as much as they can because it’s uncomfortable when they don’t.

This probably happened in their childhood, and they weren’t able to emotionally attach to one or both of their parents. But, then they carry it over into their close relationships as adults.

You avoid intimacy because you fear that other people will let you down, just as one of your parents might have done to you. [Read: How a fearful avoidant attachment style keeps you from harmony]

As a result, the person develops low involvement or casual relationships so that they can back out of them if things get too intense. Or, sometimes they alternate between the urge to pull people close to them, and then have the need to push them away. [Read: Do you keep finding yourself in a push and pull relationship?]

4. Low self-esteem

If someone doesn’t feel good about themselves, then they also might end up pushing people away. They might really care about someone, but they might not feel worthy of the love or connection that another person is offering them.

Maybe there is even a doubt that they have the skills to sustain a long-term romantic relationship or friendship.

They will have a variety of thoughts that go through their heads because of their low self-esteem. For instance, they might be worried that they’ll make a mistake someday and let you down.

Or, they might believe that you don’t actually like them and will leave them for someone else as soon as you get the chance. They just hold back because they don’t feel good enough.

When someone feels this way, it’s easy to push people away because that’s the only way they can save themselves from a heartbreak. [Read: Dating someone with low self-esteem – what it’s like for both of you]

5. Trust issues

If someone has been betrayed before, then they will have problems trusting others. Maybe one of their past partners cheated or lied to them, so it’s understandable why they would have a hard time recovering from the betrayal they went through.

When someone has a hard time trusting people, it’s difficult to repair that.

The effects of it can continue into other relationships – indefinitely if they let it. They think, “Why should I get close to someone when they will probably deceive or betray me eventually?”

Gaining trust doesn’t happen quickly in relationships. And it’s normal for people to need time before they can trust someone else. [Read: How to date someone with trust issues and win their trust and love]

So if you see the signs that someone is pushing you away, then it could be because they have trust issues. It could be directly a result of you, or it could have absolutely nothing to do with you. Either way, the outcome of distancing themselves is the same. [Read: Why do I push people away? The real reasons why you always do this]

What to do when someone pushes you away

When you see the signs that someone is pushing you away, it’s sad and also difficult to know what to do. Do you chase after them? Confront them? What are some strategies you can use? Here are some ideas.

1. Don’t overact or freak out

It’s easy to take it personally, panic, and freak out. But that won’t help. If you go off on an emotional reaction while trying to pull them back, that might just push them farther away.

So, try to stay calm, objective, and rational before you take any other steps. [Read: How to stop overthinking in a relationship and calm your mind down]

2. Talk to them about it

You need to get clarification about what’s going on with them. Tell them that you notice that they are pushing you away.

They might deny it, but you need to get them to admit it. Ask them why they are doing it. Is it something you did or didn’t do? Something you said? Try to have them pinpoint the cause of the problem.

3. Ask what they want from you

Once you have figured out why they are pushing you away, then ask them what they want you to do. Should you leave them alone? Do they want you to go to counseling? What is it that would make them feel more comfortable?

Then, do what they want as long as it is reasonable and it feels okay with you too. [Read: How to know if you should break up – 22 signs that can guide you]

4. Decide what you want to do

If they say they want a break, then you need to think about if that works for you. A “break” can mean a lot of different things.

If they want to be left alone for a while, then ask yourself if that feels right. Just because they want to do one thing doesn’t mean that is the way it should be. You are half of the relationship, so you get a say too. [Read: Relationship break – 24 rules to taking a break and how to plan for it]

5. End it if you have to

If they are pushing you away to the point that you don’t think the relationship can survive, then you might just have to end it.

They might not have the courage to do it themselves, you might have to be the one who pulls the plug. Emotional distance in a relationship is never healthy, and you probably don’t want to continue if things aren’t going to get better.

[Read: 25 topics all couples need to talk about in a happy relationship]

[Read: How to get someone to open up so you can really connect and feel closer]

After seeing these signs someone is pushing you away, what do you think about your relationship? Is your partner trying to push you away? If so, it’s time you opened up to them, and get them to express themself to you.

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Preeti Tewari Serai
Preeti Serai
Preeti, the founder of LovePanky, is an eternal optimist and believer in the beauty of love and life. With an exhaustive experience in love, relationships, and ...