Men aren't usually very good at processing their emotions. They are easily overwhelmed, making them want to withdraw from you into their 'caves' to think things through. They need space to deal with new developments.
But how long should you give him space for? Surely it shouldn't take more than a couple of days?
You should give him as much time as he needs. It is not advisable to rush a man who needs some time and space to process his feelings. In the meantime, instead of sulking, you can do something to let him know that you're there for him.
Here are some strategies you can use to give him the space he needs.
Ask Him How He's Doing
Men have been taught that in order to be masculine, they need to be tough. This is how they learned to never complain or report on how they're feeling.
Since he is unlikely to volunteer the information, ask him how he's doing instead. Don't judge him, and try not to be pushy. Just ask him for a status report. If he seems terse and curt, drop it and let him get back to his peace and quiet. Just asking about him will be enough.
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Offer Him Your Help
Men tend to want to deal with their problems on their own. However, this can take quite a bit. If you want to shorten his isolation time, ask him if there's anything you can do to help. This makes him feel in charge and takes his mind off of thinking about his issues.
This can only help him out in the long run. You've just made him think about solving his problems instead of wallowing, as well as involving yourself in becoming a part of the solution.
Allow Him To Make The First Move
Try not to rush him into coming back to you. Being clingy will not suddenly make him come back. Instead, carefully observe him while giving him space. Wait for him to initiate contact and intimacy first.
Men who are going through emotional turmoil need to be touched, but they want to do it on their terms. Try not to take things personally. It's about him now.
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Get Him To Take His Mind Off Of Things
Once he emerges from his "time and space" away, plan some quality time together. Make sure to talk about things he enjoys. If he likes to talk about dogs, then talk about dogs. If he wants to go hiking to look at mountains, go with him.
Since this is about him, remember to focus on what he does or doesn't like. Watch his kind of movies with him. This gives him space enough to be in his bubble with you, but it also reminds him of what he's missing.
Related: Signs he won't come back
Take An Interest In His Hobbies
Being appreciative of your man is part and parcel of being in a relationship. When he asks for space, however, try to give him compliments and ask about his hobbies.
If he's into fixing cars, maybe you can hang around a bit and ask him questions about how it all works. You can even throw in the occasional compliment, like "you're doing great", or "good job". Men rarely get compliments. You should shower him with them.
Don't Babble About Other People He Doesn't Know
Since he needs his space, try not to overwhelm him with talks about other people he doesn't know, or about things that are not directly related to him.
Instead, bring up things piecemeal and then wait for his reaction or response. If he doesn't look like he's interested, drop it. Aim to talk about things where you get to equally share about how you think and feel. Talk about a safe topic.
Wait For Him
Timing is crucial to things like this. Since he asked for space, let him have his peace and wait for the right moment.
If you want to talk about your issues, let him initiate or signal to you first that he's ready. He will probably bring up a related topic or something to let you know he's good. Don't be aggressive or accusatory. Let the conversation unfold on its own.
Related: Signs he misses you after a breakup
Respect Whatever He Decides To Do
Try not to make a fuss or sulk if he asks for space. Men like their space- this is nothing special to them. Respect his choice about wanting space.
Try not to talk about how abandoned you're feeling to other friends. This is one surefire way to get him to retreat into his shell more. He will feel isolated since you seem to be milking sympathy from everyone you both know. If you have to talk about it, talk to someone you're sure won't air out your dirty laundry. Don't make him extend his space.
Related: Signs a guy doesn't want a relationship with you
Don't Ask Him For Updates
Stop asking him for updates. This intrudes on his solitude and mental space. Instead, wait for him to share them with you. Once he does, that probably means that his self-imposed isolation is almost drawing to a close.
Don't Rope In His Family And Friends
If he wants space or has gone off the radar, it probably means that he doesn't want contact. The last thing he wants or needs is to keep hearing how you've called up every last one of his relatives and friends.
Be polite and reserved. Try not to make him cut you out of his life for good.
Don't Expect Too Much
While you shouldn't expect the worst, you also shouldn't expect things to go back the way they were. Something was wrong. This was why he wanted space in the first place. Don't be clingy, or desperate. Respect whatever he decides. You know he thought about it for a long time.
How Much Time Do You Give Someone Who Needs Space?
As much time as it takes. If he asked for space, it was because his tolerance was running out, and he wanted you to take it easy. Be sensible and give him the space he needs to figure things out.
How Long Should I Give Him Space Before Moving On?
Once he gets out from his isolation, and he tells you he wants it to be over, you should probably give him unlimited space then. Try to move on as soon as possible. After all, he thought about it for a long time before he came up with a decision. You won't change his mind.
How Long Should I Give Him Space When He Pulls Away?
As long as he needs it. If he pulls away, he's probably feeling rushed or pressured. He needs time and space to figure out how he feels about you. You should give him as much space as he needs to straighten things out.
How Much Time Should I Give Him To Figure Things Out?
As much as you can. Figuring things out can be lengthy. It's also not just some quick decision-making. It's more important than that. Your relationship hangs in the balance. So try not to pressure him, and give him time.
How Long Should I Give Him Space After A Fight?
Long enough for him to calm down. Once he has, you can probably talk about your fight (and the cause of it) in rational tones. Be an adult about it. Don't rush him, and don't pressure him after a fight. Leave him be, and let him come back on his own.
Nicole Graham is a relationship expert at Womenio.com. She is helping women grow into their best selves so they can be confident and bring more love, passion, and purpose to their lives. Nicole enjoys studying the psychology of love and is passionate about writing on them. She offers helpful tips and advice to help overcome any relationship issue, whether you’re single or already in a relationship.
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