While men love feeling bonded with us, they also have a strong desire for autonomy and independence. Therefore, it's not uncommon for a man to back away after being deeply connected to a woman. The space allows him to come back to his sense of self, so he can reengage with you in a solid way. This is why our emotions can feel so frustrating and scary to a man. Feelings aren't easily understood with the mind because they're an experience of the heart. Instead, the best way to communicate your feelings is simply by feeling them. What it means is: he doesn't know what to do when you are having a strong emotional reaction.
Consider these points as you move forward: Even though you cannot change your partner, you can make changes in your own life to stay safe.
Consider leaving your partner before the abuse gets worse.
Laws vary from state to state so chat with a peer advocate to learn more.
If you are still unsure whether you’re in a healthy relationship, our Healthy Relationships Quiz can help you.
If you’re single (and especially if you’re a single parent), don’t worry if you need a boost too!