Why Men Pull Away After Sex

Who else has ever slept with a man and then they disappeared?

It’s infuriating, isn’t it?

You open your heart and your soul (and a particular one of your lady parts) in an effort to get closer to your man…

Only to have it all backfire in the end as he starts to pull slowly (or maybe even quickly!) away.

What gives?

Why is it that, after such an intimate, heart and soul opening sex experience, that a man pulls away so damn quickly?

Running from what felt so good, so connected. so…RIGHT.

And there you are…

Raw, open, vulnerable.

Screaming inside…Both at him for his blatant disconcert with your sexual emotion and at yourself for letting him in.

You wait for him to call, but nothing.

You’re fuming embarrassed. You’re confused. You’re fuming…DYING even.

You’re impatience and intolerance gets the very best of you, so you send a text.

When your text goes unanswered, you send another and then another.

When all three text have been so hurtfully ignored, you call.

He doesn’t answer.

By this time, you’re so angry and resentful that your voicemail reeks of both.

But you don’t realize this and leave it anyhow. And even if you do realize it, you don’t really care.

He’s ignoring you after you opened yourself up in the most intimate, vulnerable way…And he doesn’t effing care enough to check in with you.

Because, after all, your raw, vulnerable, emotional state is what matters, right? It’s normal and natural for you to need your man right now…for you to need him to call you and touch base with you and to continue to be intimate with you through conversation and contact and making more plans with you right away.

But this article isn’t being written to shed light about what’s normal and natural for you.

Why?

Because you already know that this is normal and natural. You already know that being intimate with a man makes you want to continue to be intimate.

You already know that opening yourself up to a man results in you wanting to keep opening yourself and for them to follow suit.

So I’m not going to spend anymore time right now explaining this fact.

What I am going to do, however, is help you understand why your man (or your ex man…and any other man that you chose to be with in the future) ISN’T going to feel the same way after sex.

Unlike you…The fabulous, feminine woman that you are…Unlike you, men do not feel the need to get closer after sex.

They do, however, feel the need to get farther away.

Yes…Men pull away after sex in order to regain their autonomy and reconnect with themselves on a more masculine level. They actually need to do this.

Men go through a type of intimacy cycle that we women do not need, nor do we understand or relate to it either.

Men, by nature, feel an innate need to pull away from us periodically after periods of intimacy. Just like it’s natural for us to want to get closer to them after being intimate, it’s JUST as natural from them to want to pull away for a while.

All men are different, of course. Some will pull away right away, and others will be able to remain close and intimate for some time before feeling the need to disappear for a while and regain their autonomy through reconnecting with their masculine selves.

But no matter the man, the cycle is present.

And the sooner that you start to realize this intimacy cycle, understand this intimacy cycle, and accept this intimacy cycle…The easier (and more fulfilling) your relationships will be with men.

Realizing, understanding, and accepting this is, of course, only half the battle.

Knowing what to do in the face of this situation is the other half.

Because texting and calling and doing all of these other “chasing” type behaviors isn’t going to help the situation. Instead, these types of chasing behaviors are only going to exacerbate the situation….And possible lead to the demise of your relationship.

So…What are YOUR thoughts? Please leave a comment below! I can’t wait to read it and reply back to you.

BIG HUG!

Ellen Smoak

Author | Speaker | Relationship Coach

P.S. Get my free video series “How to beat your broken heart BEFORE it beats YOU!” for free by clicking here. In this series, you’ll learn: How to know if your ex is your soulmate, The biggest mistake most people make to get over their ex, and How to stop thinking about your ex all the time, move on, and be free! Get your free videos right here.

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Leave A Reply (37 comments So Far)


  1. APP
    1 year ago

    This is very helpful information! I am just trying to figure out what to do with this man I recently slept with twice in a matter of a week. I met online, exchanged emails and had three dates, and we had sex on the third date. Then again on the fourth date a few days later. He canceled on me after suggesting to meet again the following day, and then he has not initiated anything. He ignores me for the whole weekends and then texts me on Sunday evening, saying “I hope you are having a great weekend,” which sounds like we are just getting to know each other. I know for a fact he is still online searching, as I am, so I am not going to sweat over this, but I am feeling neglected and used. It does help me feel a lot better about the situation that a man NEEDS to pull away, and that I probably did not do anything wrong to make him pull away … I am not sure if there is anything more to be gained from this man, but I shall see … thanks again for the great post!!


    • ellensmoak
      1 year ago

      You are MOST welcome honey! I’m happy it helped you. Please keep in touch. I just put together a new video series so join my list and you’ll get it for free :) xo Ellen


  2. Tiffany Brown
    1 year ago

    Been Know that Guys for over 3 years, but never really just spent a lot of time with him. One day he called me out the blue with a offer per business, I really wanted to look into. Because of that I started spending more time with this guy. I started to really like his ways. He was Smart, Nice, believe in God, Great conversation. I would go over to his place everyday per his request and we would just do business plans, that’s it. 3 week of seeing him like everyday, we ending up kissing the connection had always been there. He told me that he really Like me and I really like him, from that point he try a couple of time to have sex, I told him that I felt that we were not really for that, he would agree with me. To make a long story short, we finally had Sex, he got mean and told me I had to make a decision between him or business. I went with the business plan! Our friendship is on the rocks and he don’t treat me the same, my heart is hurting, I still Like him after all of this but I promise him that I would only talk business with him and my personal feelings, I would deals with them. He simply say “ok” that it. We walk around each other like it never happen and to me, I feel that it was all in his (Plans) to get the Goods. Why would he spend so much time with me to gain my trust, just to have SEX. I really Hurt about this..


  3. ann muriuki
    11 months ago

    i am totally a mess after having sex with this man who i went out with only for 3dates and on the third date we had sex, but he was due to travel the following day to another country for a research then be back after 3weeks.. he said he was going to keep in touch but after he left he only called me twice and when i do call him most of the time his phone is off or when it rings he takes a long time to pickup, when he finally picks up he talks like he doesn’t want to then he asks to call me back which he never does,when i send him a text he never replies…. i feel used and angry


    • ellensmoak
      10 months ago

      cI’m so sorry Ann. That stinks! At least you found out how poorly he treats women early on. Did you get my free video series How to beat a broken heart before it beats you? If not go to http://www.breakupsareabitch.com and sign in to get it. It will help you so much! Big hug, xo Ellen


  4. Sharon
    9 months ago

    Hi Ellen,
    I’ve been dating this guy and after three dates we ended up having sex. Everything after intercourse seemed fine and just right. We chatted that night for a while and everything seemed great and now the past two days everything seems different, I barely hear from him until before he goes to bed in which he is all sweet sending me kisses and telling me Goodnight. He replies to my texts but they are short and not as lovey-dovey as before. I wouldn’t think anything of it unless he hadn’t been texting me for a month two weeks straight good morning beautiful and then all throughout the day too. Do you think he is going through the pull away or do you think he is slowly trying to slip away without hurting me? I’ve had guys before disappear completely and ignore texts and calls but just when i think this guy is gone (like a couple others have done), i hear something sweet from him. I’ve never experienced this before and it’s rather confusing and yes like your article says, irritating.


  5. confused
    9 months ago

    This was really helpful and informative, never knew men needed to rexonnect with self, and honestly believes that calling and texting would show that you were being consistes.


  6. Bk
    8 months ago

    Hii Ellen and every1 out there… Ellen your research is really good. You did a fantastic job. Hattz off.
    I dnt know if I should be saying this but the fact that the people who have commented and shared their feelings, sound very immature to me, makes me write my point of view.
    With all due respect to every ones feelings, I would like to put my view:

    1. What makes u have sex on the third date with a particular guy. This proves lack of brain and lack of practical outlook. And if you think, its being modern and being frank, then be modern completely and be open to the consequences because in third date means third meeting, and I feel getting connected to a person emotionally takes time. You need to know a person, the good and bad about a particular person which would help you decide whether to stay with the guy or girl.
    2. And if some one ignores or pulls away after having sex, then I would its because you people just had sex. you did not make love… I feel there’s a great difference in having sex and making love.
    3. Having sex is only a physical action and body’s requirement. Its just a shag. To have sex, you just need two bodies but Making love is beyond having sex. Its much more than sex. You connect to a person emotionally while you make love. You connect with the soul of ur partner. you literally touch the his/her soul.
    4. And you cannot make love to a person just after meeting him/her thrice or even 10 times. And you cannot make love to just any1 who comes your way. But you can have sex with any1 and since there’s no soul involved in it, the action doesn’t bother you much and u dnt feel the necessity to get back.

    5. More over, on a date, both the persons would obviously act good to each other as they are not familiar with each other and practically speaking, you need to be very comfortable and familiar with a person to be 100% yourself. and when you dont get to see or know the 100% original person, that means you dnt know the person at all and hence you cannot connect with him emotionally. So there’s no soul involved, no heart involved. Its just body and mind.

    And yes of course there are assholes all around who just need a fuck, but then, if you are trapped by an asshole, its your fault and its your insensibility. Because you cannot expect every1 to think or feel your way. So if you chose to sleep with a guy in few meetings, then accept the consequences also. And better to think sensibly and act accordingly.

    Thanks


  7. suzie
    8 months ago

    I must say, as a woman, I to do that man thing, when I do, that’s the men who fall for me in a big way, but I don’t them. I’m 51 and a few years ago, after wearing my heart on my sleeve for years, found myself following the male role, and I’ve never felt happier, in control and not heartbroken. I now have a boyfriend who adores me, but I will never give my all again, because I need to hold onto some for me, to enable me to remain confident, in control and respecting myself.


    • ellensmoak
      7 months ago

      Suzie, it sounds like you are in a good place! ALWAYS keep parts of you all to yourself- you deserve you too! Do you get my newsletters?


  8. Learning
    8 months ago

    Great article. Thank you.
    It does leave a question in my mind… How do you know he’s just pulling away to ‘recenter’ verses he’s pulling away to exit? Clearly how long it takes him to make contact again will be a good indicator but there must be more signs than that?


    • ellensmoak
      7 months ago

      Hi! In the beginning- no. There might not be any other signs! Best that you remain calm and see what happens. Yes, this is tough! But the right man for you will no go away for good. Building trust and faith in yourself and in spirit is the best practice while dating. Do you get my newsletters? I talk about this type of thing there. Let me know!


  9. Anony
    8 months ago

    Really confused right now. Here is my situation. There is this guy I have been seeing for a little over a month now and I felt pretty sure by the end of our 5th date that he truly was interested in me and not just in getting into my pants. He would initiate contact with me everyday and on all our dates he was very sweet, he would hold my hand and give me little kisses every now and then throughout the evening. We even went to a birthday party one night and people were getting crazy and throwing cake at each other and I got some on my face, and he took me to the kitchen and cleaned my face for me. I found it incredibly sweet. At the end of our 6th date (which was a week ago) we had sex, and he even wanted to cuddle afterwards. The next day he texted me and everything seemed fine. But throughout this past week our conversations have been much shorter than usual, and he didn’t ask to see me on the weekend. I sent him a message on Facebook last night (our main form of communication) but he never replied, and it says that he already saw the message. I am freaking out because he has never just completely ignored me like that. Is there still any hope that he might come back around? I really like this guy!


    • ellensmoak
      7 months ago

      Hi! I’m just seeing this comment for some reason :-) Any updates?


  10. Tara
    7 months ago

    Alright this may have helped me A LOT! My almost freak out break down is gone. And this is my story… Okay so I’ve been in a relationship with this guy for about 2 1/2 months now. He has kinda a busy life so he isn’t available all the time. It’s annoying but I’ve grown to accept it. One night we were in the phone and it was 11:11 i have always followed the silly tradition of when it’s 11:11 and you know it’s that time then make a wish. I wished that he would ask to see me that night. And he told me he wished I was with him. Anyways I thought that was so cute, and that night (a few days ago) I went over to his house. We made out and stuff and ended up having sex. Our first time, for both of us. He went to the bathroom after to clean up and came back and say down saying we shouldn’t have done that. He believes in god and this may have effected him. But over the next few days he ignores me. I texted, he said he was busy and would talk later. He didn’t. I called. Busy again, call “I’ll talk to you later” next day I call again, hoping to talk. Why? Because he had been ignoring me at school and everywhere. He doesn’t answer. So I’m hissing that this masculinity cycle is why he is so…. Distant now. I sure hope is is. And if it is. I hope it goes away. Please tell me it goes away… But I feel far more confident now. A lot better. THANK YOU!


    • ellensmoak
      7 months ago

      Hi Tara! Thank you for your comment! What’s the latest? Thinking about you and sending strength! xo


  11. ebony
    7 months ago

    Hi my name is ebony and I had that situation before and could not understand why that man that I was seeing has suddenly stop speaking to me after we had intimacy. I was scared and confused and started to feel self conscious about it. I did not hear from that day on but I did not chase him around. But I do want to see us work out but he said that he does not want a relationship. But he wants to continue to see me when he wants to. What should I do?


  12. P & S
    6 months ago

    Hi..
    I wish I could read this one year back, I was a dynamic girl and was really enjoying my own life with my friends, family job being an engineer, today all has become a mess.. I love this guy a lot, we were spend some nights together, but now he doesn’t need me.. he was really caring for me, seemed to be loving me a lot, but now I need him, not just for sex, but I feel like we have a bond, but now I am neglected, no more calls, text, it’s like killing me, tried to kill myself two three times, because of that only, now he is calling me.. I don’t feel to do anything.. I don’t know why he can’t understand me.. my final decision would be killing myself as I’m so fed up of this suffering life… I can’t understand, this life, relationships and all.. so hopeless and helpless.. I never feel to think of any other guy……….I don’t know, why I became so cheap to beg him, his love for my life.. now he says he needs a break and he needs relax.. but I’m suffering with this gap. don’t feel to hate him.. but.. he can’t get me, I don’t know whether he will get me, at least after my death.. feeling sorry for all the girls.. who has to come across such situation.. May God bless all of them to make their mind !!!!!!


  13. Elisabeth's
    6 months ago

    I will do.nothing. he texted me good morning this morning. I texted good morning to you. Have not heard from the man who texted me a lot more during the day. I will do nothing.


  14. Em
    6 months ago

    I’m so glad I decided to google the situation and came across your article! I’m 22 and started going out with a 27 yr old guy (boy) . Anyway after about ten dinner and drink dates and two months and after him asking me not to see other guys , I slept with him. It was awful…I told myself it was just nerves etc. . But I expected him to stay in contact with me . We exchanged a few texts the following days ., I extended an invite to him for a the weekend to join me and some friends at a beer fest , he said he was most likely going away for the weekend but would let me know ….. Never did. So I finally asked and he said he was going away , so I told him to have fun . Well I haven’t heard from him since its been 6 days . I just want an answer! Why ?


  15. Alina
    6 months ago

    lol this honestly made me start laughing!! I feel so much more secure and certain now. it makes so much more sense, thank you!!


  16. KlK Female
    5 months ago

    Hi Ellen, I am in a weird spot, I was with a man for twenty years (not married) and on a Friday I left for North Dekota to see another. I hadn’t had sex in 5 years with the first man its been very hard with him a struggle. Now, when I went and got off the plane I was so relieved was their something wrong with me for feeling that way? I hadn’t seen new man for 25 years we went to school together. Anyway, the new guy and I hit it off so well, we spent Friday and Saturday together had sex 7 times did everything I wanted and could imagine and have never done before. It was soooo wonderful. But the new man doesn’t like the word love. Now It is has been 7 days and the new man has almost totally had no contact with me. He called me yesterday, (only cause he had to) and he did call me on valentines day which I was not expecting. but was happy to here from him. He keeps telling me he’s not mad at me, but he won’t return text anymore and no more good morning phone calls, the worst thing about it was I sent him $200.00 of which I probably will never see again. I am afraid to text and call now, should I except his call if he calls? I am so worried, I am thankful for what you wrote it made me realize that there is two sides to this and he has feelings also. but I am very lonely and not sure what to do or if I will ever see him again. Help what do I do? KlK please any advice on my email would be good


  17. Alex
    5 months ago

    Thank you for this perspective, I really appreciate it! My question is this, if women desire more intimacy after sex and men desire alone time, why is it that we women have to adapt to their intimacy cycle and they don’t have to adapt to our need for intimacy. This deal kind of sucks!


  18. joyful7007
    5 months ago

    Thank you so much for the wonderful insight on this topic. I recently had sex with a man on our second date. This is not typical of me but it happened. He has definitely pulled back. I have debated sending him a text letting him know I am embarrassed we got intimate so quickly. Would you recommend just leaving him alone or being vulnerable and sending the text?

    Help!!! :)


  19. Maddie
    5 months ago

    Well I hooked up with this guy yesterday, we’ve actually been off and off for 3 years. After I left he texted me once and then stopped texting back. I’ve sent him few text messages since then, telling him I had a great time, but then stopped texting him. It’s been a day now since he last texted me. Do you think I’m ok still? Or did I pretty much just ruin everything after all this.


  20. Serena
    5 months ago

    I think your words are exactly right. I had sex with the guy who is six years younger I do. All the time we were having fun and good laughs. Right on our third date, we had sex and now it has been three four days since that night, he just passed on me. I felt like being undesired and abandoned. I am in my mood to regain my esteem and I know that if he doesn’t care enough to send me message, I have no point to contact him either.


  21. Goingthroughit
    5 months ago

    I am so glad I came across this page. I’ve been reading into a lot of psychology of dating, the rubber band effect and why guys pull away after sex. I’m 28 years old I’ve been single for 3 years after my 7 yr relationship with my highschool sweet heart. Dating is still something new to me, but I’m starting to catch on. I’ve known this guy for awhile through mutual friends, but I never paid much attention to him. It wasn’t until last may when he caught my eye at a birthday. How he laughed, carried himself, his sense of humor and his vocabulary believe it or not. We co nnected on facebook and exchanged numbering We went out to dinner a few times, we started showing up together at our local pub every friday where all our friends go to hang out, we went out in groups to local clubs, and we’ve even gone on a 4 day camping trip with our friends. He conveniently put his tent next to mine lol all of these events were strictly friendly with light flirting. It wasn’t unroll december when I told him he caught my eye, and since his divorce (also 3 yrs ago) I knew he wasn’t interested in a relationship but I wanted him to know how highly I thought of him. He distanced himself for about 2/3 weeks and I kind of expected that. Of course we started to bump back into each other knowing all the same friends, and again we went out to dinner a few times, he strung up my daughters guitar for me, we went to a parade with our friends, we’ve just started going to the beach together now weather is nice. We have spent ALOT OF TIME TOGETHER, one on one and in group settings. This last weekend a group of us went to an all day concert at the beach and rented a hotel for the night. The concert was a blast !! Omg! So much fun, with heavy drinking of course… Well the next morning I woke up next to him naked.. It was a little awkward at first but we both laughed it off, got dressed and met up with our friends and spent the whole day on the beach having a great time. He has left his stuff in my car, I texted him monday about this and no reply… I’m hoping we didn’t ruin a good friendship, because I genuinely care about him and don’t want to lose him as a friend… Tomorrow makes it a week I’m trying to keep my cool since I’ve read guys like to see just how irrational we get to see if they have dodged a bullet from a crazy train. But we’ve been hanging out as friends with light flirtation for almost a year, he knows what kind of girl I am, he has helped me dodge some creepy dudes.. He knows me as a person.. Why won’t he come get his stuff? Is he letting that be the reason to contact me when he’s ready? I’m also learning that waiting a week is the new norm to add anticipation and to see how moody, controlling or psychotic a chick is… Thanks for your blog any advice would be appreciated


  22. confused
    4 months ago

    im soo confused, I slept with a really good friend twice in a matter of a few days. we were really close, chatted everyday and used to see each other often, but now its been so long since ive seen uim and we dont even chat anymore besides the random “hi”. :(


  23. Vicki
    4 months ago

    Loved the article. The same thing happened to me last weekend. Met online, was in town for several days on business, had sex and he went on home. I hadn’t done that after seeing someone in years and even after a great time no call, no text, no return text. I was so irritated! I actually did have a good time and knew he wasn’t the one but still left me a little jilted. So when IS the best way to gauge when to be intimate with someone? It seems like all men do this and your left feeling like crap! Do you just hold out for a month and then see if the same thing happens all over again? Does the time in between even matter?


  24. Dash b
    3 months ago

    I met this guy on online dating . He told me that he likes me , we have been communicating for almost 3months and we only been on 2dates.. We spent the weekend together and we had sex.. After that I never heard from him , or if he arrived ok.. I sent him a text I never recieved a reply .. I checked online dating and he was online .. That hurt my feelings .. So I decided to send him a text on online dating he replied but not knowing that it’s me.. I spoke to his friend .. And this girl wanted proff that am dating this guy .. I sent a single pic of him but she wanted a pic of me n him together ..I ended up sending it to her .. She said they friends that they talk everyday .. I told her not to tell him that we spoke .. But she told him ..I recieved a text from him and he said that I invaded his privacy how can I talk to someone that I don’t know that he can’t trust me anymore.. He also said he doesn’t want to see me anymore .. I truely liked this guy it hurt my feelings that he said that .. :( is this my fault ?


  25. jason
    2 months ago

    Being a man I want to know what’s wrong with me to. I have been with the same woman for five years and still wish she would leave.


  26. Gabriel
    2 months ago

    Hey ladies, here’s from a guy’s perspective. Yes we can be complete pigs motivated solely by self-interest and that’s sex, we are hardwired to procreate by any means necessary. This is not an excuse by any means, it’s terrible to put you beautiful women through this. So heres a couple reasons for why we do what we do, other than the blunt truth as to what I aforementioned. Some guys after sleeping with a woman once twice and maybe several times, will always have the (whoa I need to slow down moment) meaning they feel they are becoming emotionally attached to quickly, and this will scare us off. To combat this issue what you need to do is hold out becoming intimate as long as possible. To us, it’s a predatory instinct we love the hunt, we love the game of courting that woman, until we finally become intimate with them. Yes it sounds terrible but that’s what we need, and if you give it to us too quickly, we lose respect for you. That sounds even worse but it’s the blunt truth of the matter. Another scenario is that we are only in it to have sex, we aren’t serious about settling down and all we want to do is have sex, yes this is a sad realization to come too whichever modus operandi we are being driven by. The way to tell if a man is truly serious and wants to settle down with you is by his patience, and the lack thereof in the eagerness we are to have sex or be intimate. This is when you know that a man is truly committed to having a serious and fruitful relationship, and yes, there are plenty of us out there, that are truly looking for what you want. So don’t make it too easy for us, and that will weed out the ones who are motivated by sex only and their own personal commitment insecurities. I wish you all luck, and don’t be too hard on us, a lot of a genuinely want what you want and others are just letting their animalistic impulsiveness get the better of our gender.


  27. Steph
    1 month ago

    I know this is old, so I may not get a response.
    What about a reversal? I’m a woman who almost immediately after I know the sex is over with wants to get up and get out. Even when I really, honestly like the guy, I start thinking about other/better things I could be doing with my time. I’ve had a couple of boyfriends try to guilt-trip me for not still being there when they woke up.
    If he’s asleep, why do I need to be there? I’m not tired. I’ll come back after whatever I went off to do is done, but it gets annoying when I’m supposed to sit around existing nearby until somebody wants something.
    For some reason, some guys tend to feel vaguely disconcerted when you’re shooing them politely out the door and not bothering to talk to them unless you have something they’d specifically care about to mention for a day or ten.


    • ellensmoak
      1 month ago

      Isn’t it funny how sensitive the men in our lives are? I would just explain that it isn’t personal and see what you can do to make him feel more secure. xo


  28. Teresa
    1 month ago

    This helps a lot!! And thank you. I recently had sex with a guy I’ve liked for years literally. He totally pulled away right after and I felt totally rejected and used.


    • ellensmoak
      1 month ago

      I’m glad this helped you Teresa! Have you watched the video series yet? xo


  29. Jeannette
    4 weeks ago

    Hi,

    So after going out and hanging out for a month, we had sex and he started showing me a little more attention just wanting to know how I was and he remembered things that was going on in my life. Then he wanted to take off from work so we can spend time together but he couldn’t get off work and I ended up going to see him anyway. Later on we had sex again but this time he pulled away. The next week, I texted him and wanted to meet and we decided to do so over the weekend but never set a day. I messaged him the next day wondering about the day but he did not respond. Then that saturday I invited him out with friends but he was at work late and he said he would try. He told me I could come later if I wanted but I declined because it was too late and I wouldn’t have a ride back. He didn’t reply and I never texted him again. This was a week ago. Do you think I sabotaged myself or that it was just his intentions to pull away and never look back?

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