Long-term relationships go through a lot of tough times that either strengthen them or drive an insurmountable wedge.
If all of a sudden your girlfriend wants a break, it’s time to evaluate which will be the case for you.
I understand how challenging it is when your partner suddenly wants some distance, with no specific explanation.
I’m here to offer you valuable input as to what this may mean, and what the best course of action is.
In no way should you start thinking about a break-up right off the bat.
All healthy relationships go through their set of obstacles, and there are a lot of things affecting it.
The last thing you should do is panic. Your girlfriend may simply need time to examine your romantic relationship and find herself in the process.
Right now, there are probably a million unanswered questions rummaging through your mind.
You are probably seeking relationship advice on all fronts, trying to make sense of things.
My advice is to not succumb to your initial need to react instinctively and do something you’ll come to regret.
Bear with me as I try to explain why this distance might end up being the best thing for your love life.
What Exactly Does A “Break” Mean?
As you’re trying to pull yourself together in order to get your girlfriend back ASAP, here’s something to help you understand the meaning of a break.
A break could signify a lot of different things, which ultimately depends on your specific situation.
There are times when women use a break as a power move to get you to start acting the way they want you to.
While this may be peculiar, in the long run, it doesn’t present a real danger.
But there are also cases when a break means a serious need for some alone time for some much-needed soul searching.
In this instance, your girlfriend needs time to see where you two stand and if there’s a future for you as a couple.
This is a bigger issue that I will get into in much more detail below.
During this break, texting and contacting her on social media are off-limits.
The entire point of this is to create some distance to see things more clearly.
Sending her text messages gives her the impression that you don’t respect her wishes, which might propel her to end things before actually giving it any thought.
Don’t be rash. I understand that the first place your mind goes to is panic, anxiety, and fear.
If she needs space, go about it the right way.
Pay attention to the signs you may have missed and try to make sense of them.
This may lead you on a journey toward self-improvement and higher self-esteem that you can both benefit from.
So I advise you to take the following considerations into account and ensure she doesn’t become yet another ex-girlfriend.
7 Likely Reasons Why She Needs Space
1. You no longer stimulate her emotionally or mentally
Let me elaborate. In romantic relationships (even in long-distance relationships) both partners should always be emotionally stimulating each other.
But what does this entail?
It means pushing each other to your limits and helping your partner reach heights they never knew they could reach.
It means offering an abundance of unwavering support and knowing when to back up.
It means allowing them the freedom to do what they want but always being in their corner in case they need you.
But sometimes, being too available tends to drive a wedge that becomes deeper and deeper the longer it’s left unacknowledged.
It’s about finding a balance between being there but never too clingy.
It requires a lot of effort to figure out the healthy balance of the two and finding ways to keep it going for a long time.
Your girlfriend may have realized that you no longer support her emotionally the way she needs you to.
Being there all the time might be suffocating for her.
Being at her beck and call means there is no mystery and spontaneity in your love life.
She needs to be able to do the chasing sometimes.
You need to let her need you. Do you understand what this means?
Leaving her no time to actually miss you and crave your presence can make her lose interest, and fast.
Being there too much can hurt you more than you know. People need space to figure out their own stuff.
They need space so they can see who they want in their corner.
But being there constantly may be a reason why your girlfriend wants a break.
Being in her face 24/7 and texting her all the time is making her feel crowded and this is how she will respond.
2. You base your happiness on her approval
One of the most common reasons why a girlfriend wants a break is when she’s made the sole focus of the guy’s life.
Yes, being in a relationship means being in each other’s company a lot, but in no way does it mean that this person should become the sole focus of your universe.
This creates a lot of unnecessary pressure that starts feeling too much with time.
It’s difficult to explain why this is the case, but putting her on a pedestal will only make you lose her.
Perhaps she doesn’t even realize why, but it just doesn’t sit well with her.
Needing her constant approval is extremely unappealing.
Expecting her to say I love you whenever you need a pick-me-up is selfish because those words should only be said when the person feels them in their soul.
This happens over a period of time and slowly makes her complain about everything about you.
Not being able to be your own man will drive her away in a heartbeat.
Needing her there to feel fulfilled and ignoring all your male friends just to constantly be around her makes her feel bad.
Why? Because being the center of someone’s universe is too much pressure.
She needs a masculine man who has his own purpose in life and doesn’t seek constant approval.
If you want a future with her, you need to show her that you can balance a fulfilled life that doesn’t revolve solely around her.
She needs a man who won’t be like a lot of guys she used to date.
She needs a man who won’t expect her to be his everything because soon, that amounts to nothing.
Your girlfriend wants to be a big part of her life, but not your entire life.
She wants you to pay attention, but she also needs you to take your eyes off her every now and again.
Have your own purpose and your own life goals, and she will gladly hold your arm as you take on the world together.
3. You’ve stopped giving her what she needs from you
Relationships can be funny business sometimes. You could literally be doing everything just right, and there could still be a problem.
Sometimes one partner can become so invested in their own life goals and the future, that they forget about what their partner needs from them.
It’s a funny thing really. Here you are, focused on achieving everything you’ve set out to achieve, and still, your girlfriend wants a break.
This is what happens when you stop taking her wants and needs into consideration.
In a way, this is a ”desirable” problem to have, as on your own, you’re right where you’re supposed to be – but on the relationship front, you’ve started lagging.
During your romantic relationship, you may have even realized that things have been moving too fast and you need them to slow down.
This propels you to stop giving in to your girl’s needs, in order to reduce her expectations and subtly show her you’re not there yet.
There is nothing wrong with taking care of yourself. But when it causes your girlfriend to want to break up, it calls for some thinking.
Are your life goals in sync? Do you still dream of building a future side by side? Is marriage on the cards?
All of these questions secretly affect how you approach your relationship.
You may not realize this, but your inability to give your GF what she needs might stem from you not being ready to commit to that level yet.
Perhaps she is extremely family-oriented and you’re just too focused on your career.
Perhaps you decided to move in together and you’re finding it hard to give up your apartment.
This break may be all about changing the direction of your relationship and forcing you to give in to her needs as a way to control you. It’s up to you to decide if she’ll succeed.
4. She wants to break up and is making you do it for her
Some women just cannot bring themselves to be direct. They’re not happy, they’re not getting what they want, but they want you to initiate the break-up.
I’m sorry to inform you, but this may very well be the case with your girl.
Maybe in her eyes, the relationship has run its course and she’s too scared to tell you that.
And engaging in a bad relationship behavior (such as demanding a break) means she wants to get you to end things.
See, this one’s really tricky. First off, you need to be certain that this is the cause of her sudden need for space.
Nobody can tell you that for sure as you know her the best.
But if you have reasons to suspect something like this is happening, it’s best to confront her openly and tell her that you deserve at least some honesty and respect.
You deserve to meet up like two adults and talk this through for one last time. Things end, that’s just the way life goes. But in all that sadness, some honesty can be refreshing.
If being her ex-boyfriend is in the cards for you, make her tell you face to face. Prolonging this is only going to leave a bitter taste in your mouth.
It’s always better to remember the relationship for the good times you had, instead of the crappy ending she couldn’t even give you.
If she thinks the grass is greener on the other side, let her.
But don’t give her the satisfaction of initiating the breakup. Face her with reality and get some closure.
5. She wants to leave her options open
Maybe you don’t satisfy her in bed anymore? Maybe she realizes that she wants more from life? And maybe, it’s not you at all!
Maybe she can’t figure out what she wants and playing the field will help her get to the bottom of it.
And maybe you’re in a long-distance relationship that has been making her miserable for a while now.
Sometimes, people don’t even know why they’re doing something, they just know it feels right.
What you can do is reevaluate the state of your relationship and see if there’s something you can improve on.
If you’re leaving her unsatisfied (in bed or otherwise), there is always a way to make it right.
After all, she wants a break, not to break up. This gives you some needed time to figure out what could become better in order to make her stay.
This could, after all, stem from your misdoings. Have you been neglecting her lately?
Have you been emotionally unavailable and giving her reasons to doubt your intentions?
You never know how long a girl can let you test her limits before she grows tired of it.
This break could be your wake-up call. It gives you a unique opportunity to pull yourself together and be the man she needs you to be. It all depends on how much you really want to get her back!
6. She already has someone else in mind
Women are peculiar beings. She may insist that you’re the only man in her life, but there will always be that ex she never fully got over.
And maybe, just maybe… that particular ex has suddenly become available, and she’s contemplating going back to him.
Or maybe, there’s a ”Mark from HR” that she has a soft spot for.
At work, they spend a lot of time together and they even call themselves ”work wife/work husband.’.
Yeah, it could be just playful banter, but maybe it’s something more?
You really can’t know until she pulls the rug from under you and leaves you for a guy she assured you was just a friend.
Girls always have a way of getting by. There’s always a potential suitor just waiting for her to become single.
And playing the field has suddenly become all too appealing.
Maybe your girl is tired of the monotony that your relationship has become, and she believes that this new guy will provide her with much-needed excitement.
Too bad she doesn’t realize that every relationship has the honeymoon phase.
But at some point, the spark fizzles out, and when the relationship is real, it doesn’t really matter.
If this break does end up ending your love story, bear in mind that it could only be a matter of time when she realizes what a mistake it was.
Only then, you’ll be smart enough to know that you can’t just leave a loyal partner for something more exciting and just go back when you get bored. Or will you?
7. Your actions have given her no other choice
Sometimes, it’s not her fault at all. Sometimes, it’s you and the way you’ve been treating her. And still, she doesn’t have the heart to fully end it.
This break is your chance to see the error of your ways. I want you to think long and hard about the state of your relationship lately.
How happy does your girlfriend seem? Have you been neglecting her to the point of chasing her away?
Sometimes you just need to be faced with the reality of your actions and stop pointing fingers.
Your girl may have been trying to salvage what’s left of your relationship and you’ve been failing to see it. In order for things to get better, you need to understand why they became bad.
You need to ask yourself these questions in order to see if you could’ve prevented this in the first place:
”Have I been showing her disloyalty when all she ever did was love me?”
”Have I been taking her for granted without ever saying how much I love her?”
”Have I let my busy schedule affect how often I make time for my girl?”
”Have I been verbally abusive toward her without realizing it?”
Taking your part of the blame is necessary if this break is not something you want to continue.
Fight for your girl if you want her to stay. Show her redemption if you’ve finally realized how much you’ve hurt her.
Maybe it’s too late, but maybe it isn’t! All there’s left to do is try to get your girlfriend back, and this time make it count.
How To Deal With Your Girlfriend Wanting A Break?
The fact is, right now, you’re neither in a relationship nor single. You’re somewhere in the gray zone.
So what should you do now? It can be hard finding meaning during this weird time, but here are some golden rules to help you pull through.
1. Respect the no-contact rule
Give her exactly what she wants. If that means space, so be it. I know it can be hard doing nothing when you feel like you’re about to lose her.
But letting her have this break is possibly the only thing that could save your romance.
Whichever reason propelled her to need some distance, there’s no point fighting it. This is your reality and you need to respect the new circumstances.
Your best shot at getting her back is doing absolutely nothing. Give her space, don’t contact her, and don’t try to find out anything from her friends (she’ll know).
As strange as this may sound, this could bring you some much-needed clarity as well. While I’m not insinuating that this is her fault, consider that this may be the case.
Are you really going to chase after a woman who’s making it so hard for you? A self-respecting man knows when to throw in the towel and when to stay and fight.
Maybe this is your chance to recognize what this means for you. Are you going to let her get away with this for so long? Or are you going to challenge her reasonings and be honest for once?
Instead of desperately trying to get her attention, consider if you really want it at all.
If she needs to leave you in order to see if she’s missing out on something better, is she really the woman for you?
2. Don’t try to prove that you’re the man for her
Why? Because a woman who loves you already knows this! If she is trying to get you to show her undying support, she might be doing it the wrong way.
Making you chase after her is a wrong approach. In a healthy relationship, there should be a dose of respect and appreciation.
No person trying to manipulate you into caving to their wishes is worthy of you.
So instead of being adamant to prove you’d do anything for her, simply don’t. Naturally, this doesn’t apply if there are underlying issues you’ve been able to detect throughout this article.
This only goes for men who have realized that they’re being played. In this case, allowing her to toy with your emotions and play you like a fiddle is unacceptable.
Show her you’re not that desperate. If she wants to be with you, she shouldn’t be playing games. Don’t try to chase her out of fear of rejection.
If she’s so easy to lose, let her go. You’re not immature children who’re just finding what relationships are all about.
You are two adults trying to navigate a life side by side. If one partner isn’t happy, all they need to do is speak their mind. But playing games and resorting to manipulating isn’t the way.
Focus on yourself and what you truly want out of this. Do you want to be with a person who toys with you? Or do you want someone who cherishes you even when it’s hard?
3. Create boundaries and don’t cross them
Creating clear boundaries is essential in romantic relationships.
You have to know when you’re overstepping them and what’s okay to do or say.
This allows you to never have to wonder where you stand and if there are hidden issues your girl may not be disclosing. Wondering if you’ve done something to upset her is much worse than knowing for sure.
The great thing about boundaries is that you get to decide what they are.
There isn’t a presupposed notion because every couple is different in so many ways.
Find out what works, what doesn’t, and establish a middle ground.
Communicate with your girlfriend about what she expects from you during this time, in order to endure this as easy as possible.
Is all communication off the table? Is it okay to send her a text message here and then just to check up on her?
Asking in advance is always the best policy because it leaves you with little room to do something wrong.
When you have boundaries, it’s more likely that you’ll start seeing eye-to-eye at some point and find some resolution.
You can still create a beautiful life together and thrive as a couple. Maybe this break is a blessing in disguise.
Maybe this will show your girlfriend she did the right thing by choosing you.
Yeah, things get tough, but when push comes to shove, you’re the man who always comes through for her.
A little patience could be the only thing keeping you from your happily-ever-after.
4. Start looking at this as a chance to grow individually
Like I just mentioned, this could very well be a blessing in disguise.
It’s impossible to see it now, but in a few months’ time, things could be divine!
Right now is the best time to prioritize self-growth.
You are on your own (well, in a way) and your chances to evolve and mature as an individual have never looked better.
Reevaluate your life. Is there something you’ve been neglecting to do for yourself?
Are there any dreams you’ve been wanting to pursue but haven’t had the courage to? Now is your time to shine.
Consider joining a gym or take up a hobby that will give you the motivation to get up every day. Find what makes you happy!
People tend to forget about their personal needs once they enter a serious relationship.
While this is normal to a degree, it’s also counter-productive to your own well-being.
If you don’t know what makes you happy on your own, it’s difficult to find happiness with someone else. Explore your mind, body, and soul.
This could lead to so many inspiring revelations about yourself that could also result in your girl seeing you in a brand new light.
In a way, this could be your ticket to personal development, and a happier, stronger bond with your partner.
This may have been just the thing you needed to push your limits.
Don’t be afraid to explore and pave new ways for yourself. If not now, when?
5. Be honest about what you truly want
On your spiritual journey, being genuine with yourself is crucial.
If you resort to lying to yourself, what have you really accomplished in life?
Ask yourself what it is you truly want out of life. And then evaluate if you’re anywhere near that point.
This will help you determine if this break is your chance to break free or run back.
It’s not selfish to realize you want something different. It’s not selfish to change your mind and decide to finalize this break for good.
As difficult as it is to accept, people change their opinions all the time.
Love is a powerful force that connects two people like nothing else.
But just as fiercely as it crept up, it can wither down just the same.
Don’t be afraid to admit to yourself that your flame is simply no longer burning.
It will be a tough conversation to have, but in the long run, it could save you both a ton of pain.
I’m not saying that you should end it nor am I suggesting that you need to stay.
What I’m trying to instill in you is the notion that it’s okay to follow your path.
Even if it ends up taking you far away from the one you planned your entire future around.
Feelings will get hurt and it will suck for a while. But ultimately, it will be just what you both needed to live an authentic, happy life.
6. Use this time to reconnect with your nearest and dearest
After all, your family and closest friends are always going to be there.
No matter what happens with your girl and regardless of what you may have done.
This is why it’s crucial to never take their unwavering support for granted.
Use this time to spend quality time with your family. Visit them wherever they are and show them you appreciate them.
Call up your best friends and invest time in those relationships.
Being seriously involved with your partner may not allow you as much time with them as you’d like. So here’s your chance to make up for a lost time!
Remind yourself of why you call these people your nearest and dearest. Let them put a smile back on your face by being your go-to goofy support system.
As cliche is it to say, laughter truly is the best medicine. And what’s better than laughing with your best friends? Not many things.
This will inevitably boost your self-confidence, remind you of the kind of man you are, and clear your perspective.
Your closest people know you better than you know yourself. Let them impart some wisdom to you.
Who knows, maybe their advice ends up being just what you needed to hear.
I know that for me, going to my best friends always ends up the absolute best decision I could’ve made.
Why? Because they love me, and they want nothing but the best for me.
They are the people who will tell you the harsh truth when everyone else remains silent.
They are the people who will hold your hand when you lose yourself, and they are the ones who’ll pick you up when you fall.
Find solace in your family and friends and you might find some clarity on what your next step should be in your relationship as well.
7. Learn to love yourself even when she can’t
Do you want to know the hardest pill I ever had to swallow? Learning that some people will never know how to love you.
But you need to learn to love yourself regardless.
You cannot force a person to harbor feelings for you if they’re not there.
You cannot make someone care for you the way you need them to.
It’s a selfish notion, as painful as it sounds.
But what you can do is love yourself every step of the way, regardless of how this person chooses to act toward you.
Self-love is so important.
This break might bring you closer together or it may divide you.
Whatever ends up being the case, it should never affect how you feel about yourself.
One should never base one’s worth on others’ actions.
Your girlfriend wants a break – so what? Does it mean you’re somehow less worthy?
Does it make you less desirable? Is it something you should base your worth on?
The answer to all of these is one big, fat NO. You are worthy of love just the way you are.
The way your girl chooses to showcase her insecurity doesn’t reflect how great you are as an individual.
Love yourself regardless of how your romance pans out. You are your longest commitment. Treat yourself as such.
My point is this. Never go back to someone who needs you to doubt your self-worth.
Don’t let someone else’s needs dictate how you treat yourself.
If your girlfriend wants a break, take advantage of this time to do some soul searching.
Self-improvement should be your final goal out of this, no matter where it leads you.
If it ends up forging a stronger bond with your girlfriend, that’s great.
But if it ends up leaving you alone, take it as a unique opportunity to pursue your true happiness, and to keep evolving as a human being.
Move forward, regardless if your relationship doesn’t survive this break.
A healthy mindset and a clear conscience are the keys to your happily-ever-after.
Hopefully, it’s with your girl. But even if your journey renders you alone, it may not be such a loss after all.
The right person would never make you question your own worth.
This break will either bring you together or drive you apart.
But whatever the outcome, trust that it’s the right one and move forward with your head held high.
You deserve happiness in whichever shape or form you end up finding it.
“When you recover or discover something that nourishes your soul and brings you joy, care enough about yourself to make room for it in your life.” – Jean Shinoda Bolen