After years of being together, your boyfriend has turned into an insensitive, indifferent guy and you want your money back. You sometimes start to question if he still loves you, because what he’s showing you is definitely not love. As they say, the opposite of love is not hate, but indifference. You’d rather fight constantly or see him get jealous and overprotective than be with someone as cold as ice.
You want to know the reason behind this curious phenomenon, so you can, hopefully, put an end to it. You’re now so tired of him not bothering to text or start a conversation, not paying attention, and just basically not giving a damn about you or your relationship. Don’t worry! You can still reclaim that sweet, loving man you fell in love with—if given the right intervention.
Why your boyfriend is acting indifferent
#1 He’s suffering from chronic depression. Does he have a history of depression, anxiety, BPD, or other disorders that could be affecting his mental health? If he does, maybe he’s experiencing a flare-up at the moment. If he doesn’t, then maybe this is his first time experiencing depression of some form. Do you think something is bothering him? How is his career? Is he about to go up or go down the ladder? Try to ask him about these matters, but be as gentle and empathetic as possible.
If he gives you another quick reply and a cold shoulder, be patient. There are episodes in our lives wherein we want to clam up and be soaked in our worries. Respect that. Just make sure you communicate the message that you’re there for him. Ask him again the next time he’s in a brighter mood, and tell him how it affects you. If he loves you, he will have no choice but to open up about why he’s feeling blue. [Read: 9 ways to get your man to open up and start communicating with you]
#2 He has a big problem he doesn’t want to bother you with. So, maybe he’s not depressed, but is just dealing with a very big problem that he wants to handle on his own. It could be bad news from his parents or a possible termination at work. He’s so preoccupied with worrying about whatever it is that he can’t focus on you or your relationship. All he can think about is solving the problem at hand.
How can he go all lovey-dovey when he knows his life is going to change for the worse in a few weeks or days? There are some people who’d rather be left alone to solve their problems because of ego or simply because they don’t want to bother the people they love. Maybe your boyfriend is that type of person.
Again, like the one above, be gentle. Do not force him to report his problems to you. At least not yet. Just tell him you’re there in case he needs you.
#3 He’s obsessing about something you totally can’t relate to. Most men are simpletons. They’re like 5-year-old boys. He could be obsessing over the comics he’s currently reading, the LEGO blocks he’s trying to build, the online game he just bought, his new hobby, or his new bike.
Women tend to overthink when their men get silent. They wonder if they did something wrong to make him act aloof, but in fact, most of the time, these big boys are just preoccupied with little things. It’s possible they’re just too shy to share their obsession with you because you’d never understand it. Perhaps he’s afraid you might think he’s overly interested in *read: addicted to* something you don’t approve of. He loves you, alright, but sometimes he gets absent-minded and silent because he’s thinking about his bike or car or coin collection. [Read: How to deal with an indifferent boyfriend who’s addicted to video games]
#4 He’s the passive-aggressive type. Maybe you’ve been ignoring him, so he’s decided to “teach you a lesson.” That’s what you call passive-aggressive behavior. Assess how you’ve been treating him lately. Maybe you’ve been ignoring him and giving him the cold shoulder, too. Maybe you’ve been “not giving a damn” lately, too, because you’re busy. Or maybe he suspects that you’re cheating, but won’t confront you about it, and instead, gives you a cold shoulder until you figure out why he’s acting out.
It’s tiring to be with the passive-aggressive type, but you have to deal with it if you truly love him. Have a talk and ask him if you’ve done something wrong. If he shrugs or gives a quick reply, then yes, for him you’ve done something wrong. It’s frustrating, but with good communication, it can be remedied. [Read: Understanding silent treatment to make it work for you]
#5 You’re a nag. Yes, dear. You could be the reason why he’s indifferent towards you. How can someone be sweet, thoughtful, and caring to someone who nags and whines all the time? That’s just impossible. You might say, “But he’s always known me to be a nag and he’s fine with that!” Well, he was fine at first, but maybe it has grown too tiresome.
Monitor your mouth! Have you been nagging too much lately? If you continue that behavior, you’re simply training him to shut up and stay away. Take note that even if you stop nagging for, say, a week, he will still keep his distance from you. It will take more gentleness and loving acts from you before he will feel comfortable opening up and staying close to you again.
#6 He’s not that into you anymore. Which is pretty normal in long-term relationships. Our interest in our partners intensifies and wanes throughout the years. That’s just how relationships are. It doesn’t mean he doesn’t love you anymore, though. He just knows you so much, and he’s too familiar with your quirks and routines—to the point that you don’t excite him anymore. It’s possible he bores you to death, too, but you’re just in denial.
If this is the case, you should shake things up! Go on a vacation, try a new sex position, go to a new restaurant, or explore a new hobby. The list is limitless! But nothing beats good communication and the acceptance that, although things may not be as exciting as before, you still cherish each other’s company. [Read: 30 naughty questions for couples to keep the sexy spark alive]
#7 He loves you, but he’s too preoccupied to be in a relationship. We roll our eyes when we hear celebrities say “I’m still not ready for a relationship. I love being single and I am enjoying my job.” Well, that mindset is actually valid to some people. It could be that your boyfriend loves you with all his heart, but he’s just doing so many life-changing things at the moment, that he doesn’t have the time, energy, and drive to nurture you or your relationship.
In this particular moment of his life, he feels like it is best that there are no “distractions” like your relationship. While this might sound like a BS excuse for breaking up, he might actually love you, but needs your understanding that he can’t give your relationship 100% right now.
The solution? Talk to him about it and give him a deadline. If he wants you enough, he should devote time to you, which means giving you his full attention when you’re together—even if it’s just 15 minutes a day. If you truly love him, you’ll understand and you’ll be patient with him during this phase.
#8 He’s born indifferent. There are just some men who’d rather be in their caves than go out to be with you or anyone else. He just enjoys being with himself. Take it or leave it. At the beginning of your relationship, he was still trying to please you by showering you with attention, but two years into the relationship, he probably just wants to just relax and show his true colors.
This can be traced to his childhood or his personality in general. This is also very unfair for you, because you need quality time. Tell him that, although you respect his space, you should meet halfway by devoting at least 30 minutes every day to quality time. Rest assured: although he prefers doing his own thing, he still loves you dearly. [Read: 16 reasons why your boyfriend’s so mean]
There are so many reasons why your boyfriend could be acting indifferent towards you. Before accusing him of cheating, being unloving, or being selfish, make sure he’s not acting distant just because he’s obsessing over his new bike or Lego tower. Like any problem in any relationship, the best way to deal with this is by having a gentle, grown-up talk and looking at the part you play in your relationship.
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