Why do guys distance themselves after intimacy? It’s the million-dollar question every woman wants answered. 

Everything was going so well and then he just pulled away. Was it something you did? Or were you just a hookup?

man sitting on shore looking at water

Even though they say women are complicated creatures, understanding men can sometimes be a difficult task.

However, the difficulty is not that surprising considering the physical differences between the two and the (significantly different) history of sexes. 

Before we start dispensing dating advice and exploring possible reasons for this odd behaviour, here’s one thing that might be worth considering if you truly want to understand men:

The chemical factor: sex changes man’s mind

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After having amazing sex you have noticed how men sort off power-down? They become disinterested in having physical (or any) contact at all. This can be frustrating for any woman. So, what’s going on?

Apparently, it is a chemical power-down. Following orgasm, men experience a refractory period the recovery phase. 

Research shows that during ejaculation men release serotonin, oxytocin, vasopressin, and the hormone prolactin.

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Prolactin suppresses dopamine secretion (which is needed to experience desire and motivation) and is connected to the feelings of sleepiness and sexual satisfaction.

In general, releasing said hormones lowers testosterone levels (which also drives romantic and sexual feelings). To simplify it temporarily decreases a man’s desire for sex. 

Oxytocin (the bonding hormone) and vasopressin (both released during orgasm) are also connected to the feeling of sleepiness, contributing to the unaroused post-orgasm state. That’s why men pull away after sex.

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So, if you’ve noticed that your man acts differently after sex, now you know the reason. You can have great sex and suddenly feel like he’s not into you, so keep this in mind.

If everything else in your relationship is normal, you don’t need to worry.

There are many cases, though, when this reason alone isn’t enough to explain a man’s behavior, so here’s a list of possible reasons he’s not texting you after you spent the night together:

1. He no longer feels the rush of the initial chase (he got what he wanted)

man sitting at table and holding phone

Men like chasing women for a few reasons. Firstly, it helps them determine how much they really like a woman. Plus, they enjoy competitiveness, flirting and playing games is fun for them, and it’s good for their ego.

They like the feeling of winning a woman’s heart over other men and knowing a woman fell for them by being intimate with her. That’s when the rush sometimes stops.

It doesn’t necessarily mean he’s not into you, it’s just that he proved something to himself and the initial excitement has waned.

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However, some men lose interest completely after reaching their goal. That simply means he was never the one for you.

When a man is attracted to you it’s natural he thinks mostly about sex. Basically, he invests his time and energy in keeping you entertained and seducing you.

Consciously or subconsciously he expects something (and that’s sex) in return. If he gets what he wants, his curiosity is satisfied.

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This is the reason why it’s important to play the game a little bit longer and make him wait, slowly fall in love with you, and become interested in things other than sex.

That’s what’s going to make him want something more serious and long term. 

For things to become more serious, he needs to know you as a person and like you. If you challenge him, chances are he will realize you’re worth the work he’s putting in.

Letting him know that being intimate is something you deem special is going to make the whole thing even more exceptional.

2. He doesn’t want a long term relationship

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It’s important to understand the difference between physical and non-physical attraction. 

Physical attraction is what men or women feel for the opposite sex based purely on physical attraction. 

Non-physical attraction is an attraction to personality and all the things that don’t include the body and physical attributes.

Believe it or not, men are interested in the non-physical side of things just like women, but what’s different is their view on sex. Let me explain. 

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When a woman is interested in a man on a non-physical level, chances are she will be physically interested too and want to sleep with him.

On the other hand, when she’s turned off by a guy’s personality – even though he’s hot she probably won’t sleep with the guy. 

It’s not the same for men. It’s common for men to sleep with women they’re physically attracted to whether they are non-physically attracted to them or not.

man sitting near window while looking at city

In short: the guy pulls away because he’s only interested in sex and once he gets it there’s nothing to make him stay. 

If he doesn’t like the girl’s personality enough, he doesn’t consider a long term relationship. This might hurt but it’s a possible answer to the question “why do guys distance themselves after intimacy?”.

3. He never planned on sleeping with you more than once

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This ties with the previous reason. He only wanted a one-night stand. How can you know this beforehand?

Look for the clues in his text messages, social media posts, and the things he says. 

What does he talk about? Does he mention sex on a first date?

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Some other things you should pay attention to are: if he’s checking other girls out when he thinks you’re not looking, whether he really listens to what you’re saying, if he calls you on very late dates, and how he acts after you’ve had sex for the first time

This one hurts, but sometimes, men are specifically looking for a hookup and nothing more.

Of course, the right thing to do would be to tell you this upfront, but this may mean no sex. That’s how you know the guy’s a player. 

4. You’re moving too fast

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It’s possible that you’re moving too fast for him. If you spent the night together and the next morning you cook him breakfast and start planning your weekend together that might scare him away. 

Slow down and wait till you know each other a little bit better. Sometimes it takes longer for men to fall in love or admit to themself they’re in love.

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If you’ve only been together for only a short period of time, you may not have spent enough time together to make decisions that will affect your everyday life. 

Wait till you know each other better to make decisions that include both of you. Spending time together will eventually clear things up and you will be sure if he really likes you or not.

5. You’re acting overly attached

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Acting clingy can be a turn off for many people, especially men. Put down the phone and skip that phone call

Maybe you really like him and want to share everything with him but think about whether it’s too soon. Neediness is considered unattractive according to current social norms.

That’s why playing hard to get is so popular. 

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Why do men pull away when they detect clinginess? Clinginess can stem from a person’s lack of other interests and hobbies.

You should never neglect your own life and totally commit your time to him, not even if he’s a great guy who treats you the best way possible. Everyone should have their own space and time for themself.

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Clinginess can also mean being overly jealous and lacking self-esteem.

It’s important to recognize that and work on yourself. Feeling independent is a great feeling that can build your self-esteem and make you more attractive.

It’s reassuring when people can feel good on their own and care for themself without looking for somebody else to make the move or tell them what to do.

6. He’s scared of intimacy

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It’s not uncommon for men to be scared of love. There are many possible reasons why men are afraid to commit. Maybe he had a turbulent love life and a bad break up in the past. 

Maybe he has issues that he never addressed. We live in a society that encourages men to suppress their feelings so it’s not surprising that men can be scared of emotions. 

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For men, sex is separate from being emotionally intimate. Being emotionally intimate isn’t always easy. It reveals our weaknesses and shows us things we’re maybe not ready to confront.

Some men are more aware of this and they might communicate things clearly; others are totally unaware and end up acting like assholes. Whatever the case, you should never let anyone disrespect you.

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If he isn’t healed from previous relationships, it’s better not to engage in a new relationship. Serious relationships are about opening up and commitment.

There’s no good relationship without letting go of the fear of intimacy. If he’s not able to do that, then it’s better to move on or you’ll end up heartbroken.

7. He hasn’t made up his mind yet

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If a guy distances himself after intimacy it doesn’t always mean he’s not into you or something is wrong. Maybe it’s just too soon for him to have decided whether he likes you in that way or not. 

Sometimes there are external factors that should be considered, like for example if your potential relationship would be long-distance, or if your cultural background is very different. 

Not everyone is ready to turn their lives upside down after only spending a short amount of time together.

8. He’s afraid of how much he loves you

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Ok, I know this sounds unbelievable and cliche but it is possible.

As I said, men are conditioned to hide their feelings and strive to be as tough as possible and that doesn’t include cuddling after sex and making you breakfast in bed. 

There’s a reason those gestures are considered romantic (are rare). Most men feel awkward thinking about doing something like that – even if they want to!

Maybe he’s afraid of falling too hard for you. This means he won’t be able to control his emotions and that can lead him to get hurt.

This scenario can explain avoidant behaviour, especially if you intuitively know he truly likes you.

What to do when he pulls away

Give him space

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By giving him space you avoid appearing needy and test his true interest in you. If he really likes you he will make the next move.

If he doesn’t, it’s time for you to move on. There’s no reason why you should invest yourself in a guy who doesn’t care enough.

Ask him for his honest opinion

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If his behaviour is really bugging you and you want to find out the truth, be open and direct and ask him why he’s acting like that?

Don’t use an accusing tone of voice and try to not sound like you’re attacking him. Maybe his answer will surprise you – you never know.

Continue with the game

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If you think the spark is still there, despite his behaviour, just continue playing the game. Make him chase you. Show him you don’t need him.

Live your life as you would without him. Go out and have fun, don’t pay attention, and see what happens.

I hope I’ve given you an answer to the question “why do guys distance themselves after intimacy?” and that now you know what to do.

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Remember: never normalize disrespectful behaviour and before being intimate with someone ask yourself if you really want to be intimate, or whether you feel like it’s something that’s required of you. 

Women should be able to have sex for enjoyment’s sake and not as a way of proving something or conforming to the norm.

Embrace your intuition and your sexuality and don’t let anyone, especially not your loved one, control your life because good relationships are not based on controlling or conditioning but understanding, honesty, and respect.

Why Do Guys Distance Themselves After Intimacy 8 Common Reasons