When he tells you to date others, you don’t really didn’t expect to hear it. You want to hear him say he intends on making you his and that he wants you just as much as you want him.
It’s hard to hear this from someone you have genuine feelings for.
Yes, maybe you were at fault here because you had expectations, but who wouldn’t? When you’re so close to calling someone your boyfriend, you don’t want to face the other possibilities at all.
Which is completely understandable. You shouldn’t let anyone tell you that your emotions aren’t valid, because they are.
The two of you had been seeing each other for quite some time, but you never really touched on the topic of exclusivity. You just assumed that it was the only way to act.
That’s why you never even considered talking to another guy while you were seeing him.
There’s also an agonizing question that comes alongside his words: Does this mean that he’s seeing other women as well?
You don’t want to believe that he’s been going behind your back like this because it hurts like hell. You want to trust and respect him, but if he’s truly acting this way and disrespecting you, then you can’t help but wonder if you’re just wasting time.
He doesn’t owe you anything, but that doesn’t alleviate your feelings in the slightest.
What are his reasons for saying stuff like this? What should you do next?
When he tells you to date others, this is what he actually means
I was in this same situation just a couple of months ago. I was so sure that we were heading towards an actual relationship. We would even talk about our future together and he was so sweet.
I don’t mean to sound delusional, but he was really giving me all the signs that he wanted to be in a serious relationship with me.
This man would shower me with compliments and tell me just how much he was into me. He would even go as far as to write me entire paragraphs about how much I mean to him.
So when a man like that tells you to date others, those are the last words you expect to come from him. I didn’t want to hear him say those things because at that point I only had eyes for him!
I wanted to see where things could lead us and what we could create together. Whenever we’d go out and talk, I could feel a genuine connection.
I wasn’t just hoping for things to fall into place, they just did. Everything seemed so natural with him.
However, he didn’t want an exclusive relationship. A new relationship for him meant so many things that I didn’t understand at the time.
When a guy wants you to see other men, it says a lot about how he sees you and what he thinks of your relationship. You don’t have to be a relationship coach to understand that this is everything but a good way to start a healthy relationship.
I spent a lot of time thinking about this and figuring out what he wanted to say and here’s what I found out.
1. “I’m not ready emotionally”
I don’t know your current situation with the man you’re seeing. But the truth is you’re probably nothing more than friends with benefits at this point.
You can easily see if a guy is emotionally ready for an actual relationship.
Think back to whether he ever mentioned just getting out of a relationship. If it hasn’t been long since he got out of a relationship, then he won’t be able to get emotionally involved with you.
You’re completely ready to let him see the most vulnerable side of you, but you know that he’s holding back.
When he tells you to date others, it can truly mean that he’s not ready to give you his heart at this point because he’s still stuck on his ex.
Of course, he didn’t have to start anything with you if he wasn’t sure, but at the same time, he’s not lying to you. He may not even be aware of the fact that this is the issue.
You know how emotionally detached men can be. They don’t even know what they’re feeling.
The only way you can find out if this is the reason is if he’s ready to share his past with you.
2. “I’m already seeing someone else”
I hate to break it to you, but when he tells you to date others while also seeing him, it definitely could mean that he’s already seeing someone else.
You can’t expect a man like him to be in a committed, long-term relationship with you. He obviously needs the validation of other women at the same time and that lets you know that he’s not serious about you.
He clearly doesn’t have strong feelings for you. If he did, then he would focus solely on you. Spending time with you is simply convenient for him, so now he’s dating again.
It doesn’t matter if he met someone on the dating apps he’s using or if he randomly bumped into a girl that he likes. Either way, he’s telling you that you need to see other people because he’s already dating.
You probably haven’t even discussed the thought of an open relationship with him, but he obviously decided for you.
The real reason he said this to you was that he wanted to have the freedom to be with other women and not feel bad for keeping you around.
3. “I’m just not that into you”
Do you truly believe that a guy who’s crazy about you would ever want to let you go that easily? Do you believe that he’d not be livid at the thought of you being close with any other guy if he truly was into you?
We tend to believe that the bare minimum of attention that we receive from men is enough proof of his devotion to us.
But he probably doesn’t even think much of it. Just because he’s talking to you often doesn’t necessarily mean anything.
His actions show so much more than his words could ever say. His actions are showing you that he obviously doesn’t like you as much as he might tell you when you’re alone.
Even when you’re texting, he’ll tell you just how much you mean to him, but sentences like this one make you doubt his intentions. Which is completely understandable.
You’re confused because you’d never say something like this to a guy you like. You like him and that in itself won’t let you look at anyone else in a romantic sense.
You’re extremely loyal, even if you’re not together. You believe he needs to see that you’re honest with your own feelings. But he’s just not on the same page.
4. “I don’t think it’s the right time for us”
Let’s give him the benefit of the doubt. Guys aren’t always just players who just want to have you as their backup plan.
There’s a big chance that time and place aren’t on your side. I know that this sounds like an excuse, but sometimes we really do meet the right people at the wrong time.
Does he have to move somewhere right now? Is he trying to work through some of his own issues? Is he really giving a lot of his focus to other aspects of his life that let him know he can’t get into something serious at this point?
This is quite possible, to be honest. You probably want to believe that he’s an awful human being when in actuality he just doesn’t want to hurt you.
He doesn’t want to be the person who will bind you to him, while he has other things to do first.
Sometimes, we can’t expect someone to put everything aside for us. You can’t expect him to put his life on hold just so he can start a relationship with you.
I know that you feel like he put you in the friend zone, but he’s actually looking out for you.
You can really see if this is true by the way he looks at you. He’s sad and he’s hurt just as much as you are by this entire situation. He would love to give you the world, but it’s not the right time.
He tells you to date others so that he doesn’t feel bad about not being able to be there for you when you need him.
Even if you end up finding someone else, he would much rather endure the pain all by himself than make you wait for him.
Maybe you should think about this a little bit more and see if this could actually be the case.
5. “I don’t deserve you”
What if he’s actually in love with you but he thinks that he doesn’t deserve you? This can mostly happen with an ex who hurt you in the past or with someone who has major self-esteem issues.
When he tells you to date others, he could actually be telling you to find someone better than him. Of course, you won’t know this unless he tells you this himself.
However, you may be able to spot this in him whenever you tell him how much he means to you and he just shuts down.
When a man goes through a lot in life and he doesn’t see his worth, he will motivate you to find someone else who’s better than him. He doesn’t believe that he’s worthy of you.
When he tells you to date others, he does so to prevent what he thinks is the inevitable pain of realizing that he’s not enough for you. He believes he’ll disappoint you sooner or later.
In this situation, there’s no real relationship advice that you can follow. If he’s not able to recognize his own worth, there’s not much you can do to help him.
What you should do if he tells you to date others?
Now that you’ve gone through all the possible reasons for his words and behavior, it’s time to take action.
You can either choose to stand around and wait for things to unravel themselves, or you can do something about all of this.
You shouldn’t have to be the one to endure all the heartbreak. This man wants to date others and tells you to do the same? Well, then, there’s only a limited list of things that could actually work.
This is a very specific situation that you’re in that may not even resolve itself easily. I know that dating others while you’re seeing each other is a huge dealbreaker for you, but if you truly believe that he’s worth the trouble, then perhaps you should try the following steps.
Don’t throw in the towel. Try, then see what happens. You may even end up in a committed relationship by the end of it.
1. Realize that the choice is yours
First and foremost, you have to understand that the choice is completely yours. You’re not the one who has to follow any of the things he tells you. You’re the one who’s in charge of this situation.
The choice is up to you.
Take a moment to really read your own emotions. Look into yourself.
Is this okay for you? Do you feel comfortable with this? Does this make you trust him less? If yes, then will you ever be able to trust him again?
All of these are very valid questions that you need to answer for yourself before you even think of doing anything else.
It’s completely okay if you want to guard your heart and not go along with his plan. It’s also okay if you want to test this out for a while to see if this is for you.
When he tells you to date others, it’s nothing more than a suggestion. You’re the one who makes the final decision. So don’t let yourself be pressured into doing anything that you don’t want to.
It’s also important to pay attention to how he’s behaving at this particular time to see if there’s any chance that he could change his mind.
2. Realize that your time is valuable
This is another tip for you, to just take a moment and think. You have to do a lot of internal work first so that you’re ready for any and every outcome.
You shouldn’t waste any of your time on a man who isn’t sure about you. He wants to friendzone you and then tell you that it’s the right time to start seeing someone else.
Don’t let it break your heart so you end up crying yourself to sleep and thinking about him constantly.
And the thing is, you wouldn’t have to do that if he was the one. You’re just blocking your blessings by trying to figure out what he does and doesn’t want from you.
You’re trying to stay “loyal” to this man even though you’re not officially together. You don’t owe him anything, especially not your time.
So don’t put your love life on hold for him. If he doesn’t value your time, at least value it yourself.
3. Show him you don’t want anyone else
As stated before, you may just be dealing with an actual good guy who’s just extremely insecure. He doesn’t want to hurt you, the timing isn’t right, or he could just be scared to let you in.
When you’re sure that he’s just misunderstood and that you need to pay more attention to him, then you should show him that you don’t want anyone else.
When he tells you to date others, it could be a cry for help. He wants to see how much you care for him and if you’ll fight for him.
I know that it’s quite a bad way to show this, but at the same time, he’s hurt. He wants to see what you’d do when you do have the permission to move on.
This will expose your vulnerable side. Be prepared for it and stay strong.
Tell him how you truly feel and show him that you don’t want anyone else. Show him that he’s the only man you’re interested in. This will, hopefully, make him realize your intentions are pure, and he’ll let go of his crazy ideas.
4. Enforce the no-contact rule
This is such a piece of basic advice, but it truly works wonders. Going no-contact means that you won’t communicate with each other for a certain amount of time.
When he tells you to date others, you’re hurt and you don’t think rationally. So take this time to avoid his phone calls and text messages. If you feel the need, you could even block him on your social media to make a statement.
During this no-contact period, two things can happen. Either he realizes that there’s no one as good as you out there, he misses you, and then he comes back to you. Or he simply moves on without batting an eye.
Those two outcomes are on completely opposite sides of the scale, but you’ll want to consider both if you do this.
During this time, you will also be able to see how much you actually love him. Because when you’re level-headed and you’re able to distance yourself from him, you may end up realizing that he’s actually not the guy for you.
5. Have a heart-to-heart with him
Whatever you decided after the no-contact period, you still need to have a genuine conversation about it.
You can either break up completely or you can hook up one more time and realize that you actually want a relationship with each other.
There’s no bad ending to this, to be honest.
This just means that you will have to text him first after the no-contact period is over. You will have to be the one to reach out and see if he still wants to talk to you.
I know that it’s scary, but you truly need to get the closure you deserve and take care of your own needs.
If he flat-out refuses to talk to you, then you know what he thinks and feels. If he does decide to talk things through with you, then there’s a good chance that things will end just the way you want them to.
But know this: When he tells you to date others again, you have every right to walk away completely.
This is exactly what happened in my case and I made the decision to just let him live his own life on his own terms.
I simply didn’t want to be someone’s backup plan that he can come back to whenever it doesn’t work out with someone else. I knew that I wasn’t willing or able to go around and date multiple men at the same time.
6. Realize that he already made his choice
When he tells you to date others, just know that he’s already made his choice. He’s probably thought this through and decided to really lose you.
He knew that the possibility in itself was too real and that he could easily wake up one morning and not have you in his life anymore.
So whatever does happen, just know that he’s already made his decision.
He was prepared to lose you while he was still talking to you. He would rather see you in the arms of someone else than hold you in his own.
Could you really trust a man like that? If he changes his mind about this topic, you may choose to forgive him, but until then, you should know that he’s already decided.
If the heart-to-heart you have with him doesn’t end the way you hoped, then just know that he’s not the man for you.
You’ve done so much and fought so hard for him. Your heart is broken and you’re exhausted. You deserve so much better than a man who obviously isn’t sure what he wants in life.
Go and find your happiness elsewhere.