Home Love & Relationship What Does It Mean When a Girl Says She Needs Space?

What Does It Mean When a Girl Says She Needs Space?

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While some guys seem to think that needing “space” means that your girlfriend wants to break up, it is not always the case. Sometimes, a girl says that she needs space when she wants to end things and does not want to hurt your feelings. Rather than be honest, she disappears in a nebulous cloud of phrases like “take a break” or “I need space.”

At the same time, there are many cases where your girlfriend genuinely needs space. If your relationship advanced pretty quickly, she may just need a bit of time to process everything and figure out what she wants. If your girlfriend says that she needs space, what she means can vary depending on her, the situation and your relationship.

What Does It Mean When a Girl Says She Needs Space?

When you hear that your girlfriend wants space, you may wonder if she is having an affair or wants to break up. Relax. While needing space is probably not a positive sign, it is not something you should panic about. Your biggest takeaway may be that you should spend more time working on your relationship and spending time with her. Of course, don’t do either of these things yet. If she says she wants space, stay away.

The first thing that you should do if your girlfriend wants space is to listen to her. She says she wants space, so take what she says at face value and give her the space that she needs. Most likely, she was being honest and needs some time and space. Don’t call her. Don’t text her. Don’t bother her. Leave her alone until she reaches out to you again.

Some guys are worried that asking for space is just a way to manipulate them or for the girl to find out if her boyfriend cares enough to fight. Don’t worry about these things. You respect her, so you accept what she says and trust her to be honest. If she is being manipulative or playing games, then she isn’t worth your time anyway. Besides, if what you guys have is real love and worth keeping, she will take the space she needs and then come back.

You Both Need to Grow as People

In many relationships, partners fall too fast and suddenly seem attached at the hip. Having a close relationship is great, but you are still an individual person with unique desires, needs and goals in life. You both need to have time to pursue your dreams, grow as people and have fun. Sometimes, a girlfriend will ask for space because she feels crushed or suffocated by the relationship. It can feel like the relationship is the only thing that matters in life, and she can start to feel frustrated. She has goals and dreams; while she loves being with you, she may just need space to make sure that she can pursue some of her own hobbies and passions. There has to be a balance between your lives, work, school, friends and your relationship. If the balance is off, your girlfriend may find herself needing space to focus on her own life.

What Should You Do Now?

1. Listen to What She Says



Your first step is to listen to what she says. Pay attention to everything that she says because she is trying to relay something important. At the moment, it’s all about her. Don’t take things too personally and do not read too much into anything. Just listen to her and avoid getting defensive.

2. Ask for Clarification

If you searched for this article because you didn’t understand what “space” means, then you probably need to get some clarification. Talk to your girlfriend carefully and openly. You need to find out what she means by “space.” Does she just want time to read a book, start a hobby or take a bubble bath alone? Or does she want to take a break for three weeks and see what happens? You should certainly ask her if this means that she wants to break up. As nerve wracking as it is to ask her this, it is far better than finding out three weeks later when she disappears that she wanted to end things.

If you live together, you need to talk to her about your living situation. Obviously, you both need a place to stay. Does she want you to stop texting, calling or talking to her? Is she willing to to stay somewhere else if she wants to switch up the living arrangements? During this time, what does she expect from you and how will she act? If this is a temporary break and not just “space”, you need to be clear about what you guys can and cannot do with other partners. Many, many guys (and girls) get into trouble because they slept with someone on a break and their partner got upset. You should both clarify this topic together to prevent a future argument—but make sure to emphasize that your goal is not to sleep with someone else, or she may think that you wanted this opportunity.

 

3. Respect Her Wishes

Your next step is to respect what she wants. If she says not to text at all, don’t text her. If you try to reach out to her too much right now, text her constantly or call her all the time, it will end up making you seem clingy or needy. If she already needed space, this type of behavior would only drive her away from you. Don’t “accidentally” run into her at the store or happen to drive by her home. Give her the space she needs for the time that she needs. In the meantime, don’t spend too much time on social media because it will only make it harder for you to avoid messaging her. Hang out with your friends, stay busy and respect her wishes.

4. Keep Grounded



As we mentioned before, sometimes partners just need space to remember who they are, what they want and find themselves. During this time, focus on yourself. Remember who you are, take time to do some soul searching and reconnect with the activities that you love the most. This could be an opportunity for you to grow as a person. If she comes back to you, you will be even better than before. And if this turns out to be the end of your relationship, you will be better prepared to move on, find someone new and enjoy life again.

What If She Has Left You for Good?

Unfortunately, this is still an option. Breaking up with someone completely is a big step to take, and some people are just not confident enough to do it in one fell swoop. While your girlfriend may just want some extra space, it could also be a preparatory time as she gets ready to end things for good. If this is the case, giving her space won’t hurt anything. In the best case scenario, she will rethink a break up after seeing how maturely you respected her wishes and gave her space. In the worst case scenario, she leaves anyway. Whatever the case, your best bet is still to just listen to what she says and hope that it all works out for the best.

94 COMMENTS

  1. So I’ve been with my gf for 2 1/2 years. Our relationship has been long distance yet we have made it work for 2 1/2 years and made it a priority to see each other at least once or twice a month. She just informed me that she wanted some space which I respected but it came out of the blue. Our relationship was at a point in where we went to look at engagement rings, talking about marriage and how we can’t wait to spend our lives together and living under one roof soon. I’m just confused. I can respect her needing space but after 2 1/2 years of been committed to one another, she decides she’s doesn’t want to be in a commitment anymore. Is her taking some space/break mean she’s slowly trying to break up because she doesn’t want to tell me straight up. She’s even asked me to marry her and top of showering me crazy amount of love. I honestly don’t know what to do or say.

    • People’s feelings change for a variety of reasons. She has shared her thoughts and feelings with you. She wants to no longer nourish this relationship like she used to. It is possible that she is interested in ending this relationship. Take this time to determine what you want for your future. Speak directly and honestly with her about your thoughts and feelings. Have a great day, Prat!

  2. So my gf and I have been in a serious relationship for 2 1/2 years. Just the other day, she told me that she wanted some space/a break because she swamped with school and the burden of a distance relationship is getting hard. I get that distance is hard in any relationship and it’s never easy. We have gotten through 2 1/2 years of being strong and seeing each other at least twice a month. We went engagement ring shopping, talked about the future together and obviously living together under one roof soon. She’s even asked me to marry her on top of all that. We’ve had our ups and downs in this relationship but we’ve fought through them together. First she tells me she wants a break and minutes later she tells me she’s not ready for a commitment. I’m just confused to as if she needs some space, which I’m happy to give her or she wanting a break so she can slowly fade away from the relationship?

    • People’s feelings change for a variety of reasons. She has shared her thoughts and feelings with you. She wants to no longer nourish this relationship like she used to. It is possible that she is interested in ending this relationship. Take this time to determine what you want for your future. Speak directly and honestly with her about your thoughts and feelings. Have a great day, Pratik!

  3. So I’m in a relationship with my best friends sister, she has a 4 year old daughter and we’ve been been dating for 3 months and in a relationship for 3 weeks. After she finished work I messaged her and asked how her day was but she ignored me until today when she said she needed space because she likes being on her own as well and she also said her head is all over the place and she’s not sure what she wants. When I’m with her everything is amazing! Could this be because she was treated badly in past relationships?

    • This may be her desire to spend time with herself. She needs time to herself and with her children. Allow her time to herself. Reach out to her in a few days. Give her an opportunity to reach out to you. Take this time to determine what you want for the future of this relationship. Treat her with kindness and compassion. Have a great day, Arron!

  4. I was in a relationship for 4 months and we had a fight one day all of a sudden she came that day and told me I don’t wanna stay with u anymore and I wanna breakup cause she feels I am controlling and my anger is to much. And she does not wants to talk to me that she needs space and time. Me being a dumb ass I tried talking to her that made my things more worse and it has been like 3 weeks she dint talk to me but still went to talk to her. She does not even wants to see my face and also she Said at this point she does not even care about me that what I am doing. On the same day when I talked to her last time she was being very rude and with that sometimes I use to crack a small joke and she use to laugh I seriously don’t know what to do right now.

    • Do not attempt to reach out to her. She is not interested in nourishing a relationship with you. She has ended your relationship. Allow thoughts of her to fade. Focus your emotional energy elsewhere. Learn a lesson from the end of this relationship. This will ensure that you share your kindness and compassion with your future partners. Have a great day, Rohan!

  5. So I’ve been talking to this girl for three months and we’ve seem to have been getting pretty close but at time i felt as if i was putting in more effort then she was. Like for example we would text everyday and if i didn’t text her first we wouldn’t text all day. But anyways we get pretty far to the point where i was gonna ask her out and then she told me she can’t do this she needs to focus on herself. What do i do?

    • The two of you share an emotional connection. It is clear that you respect her and want to treat her well. She has shared her thoughts and feelings with you. She is unable or unwilling to maintain a relationship with her. Allow thoughts of her to fade. Do not reach out to her at this time. Determine what you want for your future without her. Have a great day, Cheese!

  6. So I’ve been talking to this girl for three months and we’ve seem to have been getting pretty close but at time i felt as if i was putting in more effort then she was. Like for example we would text everyday and if i didn’t text her first we wouldn’t text all day. But anyways we get pretty far to the point where i was gonna ask her out and then she told me she can’t do this she needs to focus on herself and her priorities. Whats do i do?

    • The two of you share an emotional connection. It is clear that you respect her and want to treat her well. She has shared her thoughts and feelings with you. She is unable or unwilling to maintain a relationship with her. Allow thoughts of her to fade. Do not reach out to her at this time. Determine what you want for your future without her. Have a great day, Mark!

  7. I’ve been in a relationship for about 2-1/2 yrs. she went thru a hard divorce and was dumped by her husband of 15 yrs 2 kids no warning etc. I met her about 1-1/2 yrs after that. Recently she’s changed lost weight and started going out with her single friends. A week ago she said she still loves me but needs space and wants to just be by herself and her children to figure out her feelings on everything. She said she hasn’t met some one and doesn’t know if I’m right for her and is confused. I know I did the wrong thing with long texts poring my heart out to her and she told me it’s only pushing her further away. What should I do give her space and not date, or proceed on with my life and try and find someone new? I’m single 52 and have no children. Should I wait for her to make up her mind or just proceed on, I feel time is running out for happiness to come my way and she made me very happy. she told me if she doesn’t do this she may end up being a miserable women. And to give her space she hasn’t returned any of my stuff and I’m not asking for it. Is this a break up or just a time out. ?? Help

    • She has shared her thoughts and feelings with you. She wants you to give her space at this time. Do not reach out to her at this time. If she shares her thoughts and feelings with you, then share yourself with her as well. Focus your emotional energy elsewhere at this time. Determine what you want for your future. Have a great day, Alan!

  8. This is my case..we have dated for 6 years with this girl and we was ready to to get married,thing’s started being rocky of late and after she lost her Dad recently it has gotten worse,she asked for sometime alone and I respected that but the thing is it’s been too long,for mothan one month now and she hasn’t reached out yet dhough she said she will reach out..I only see her post photo’s showing or putting on the thing’s I baught for her…
    I really dont know what to do now..help.

    • It is possible that she is interested in rekindling your relationship. It is possible that she will continue to need time for herself. Continue to give her an opportunity to reach out to you. Determine what you want for your future. If you are thinking of ending this relationship, then either speak with her about your thoughts and feelings or allow thoughts of her to fade. Have a great day, Alex!

  9. I asked for a space from by boyfriend because I detected I’m his least priority..me being emotionally strong I got worried and wanted to work out but me asking for a space has gotten him angry what do I do now

    • You told him that you were interested in being apart from him. He likely felt this as a rejection. He is confused and uncertain about his and your feelings. He may not want to nourish a relationship with you at this time. Speak with him about your thoughts and feelings. Give him an opportunity to share himself with you as well. Have a great day, Lawrence!

  10. I always feel like I am second on her list of priorities. I have really bad anxiety issues do to our past. She asked if I was okay recently, I told her no I’m not. I told her everything that was on my mind some small and some large to me but it seemed like nothing to her. She went on her phone and didn’t really seem interested. I brought it up to her before bed and she said she needed time to think and let things sink in but she’s forgotten it has been days sense that conversation. I’ve told her I like the idea of reassurance and validation to keep my mind grounded multiple times, but nothing changes some weeks its nice I feel important like she wants to talk and others I say a some things and its like I could’ve just not said anything at all. I’m worried I am too boring and uninteresting. Today i asked when are we going to hangout and she said she needed space, but it has been days sense we’ve had some good time spent together. When she came back from needing space, it’s like nothing has changed. We didn’t talk about it, just went to being awkward for me. My heads been so full of this girl that I feel afraid of what to do

    • You have shared your thoughts and feelings with your partner. She has decided to ignore you. She separated herself from you and returned. You may have concerns or worries. Speak with her about your ideas and ensure that she listens. If she ignores your or does not change her behavior, then determine what you want for the future of this relationship. Have a great day, Griffin!

  11. Hello,been dating my girlfriend for the past 5 years and we been through ups and downs in our relationship.After we went into a long distance relationship. We ended breaking up the first time and I after awhile been angry I forgave her and we moved on. Later she kinda lost interest again cos we had arguments cos of her new male friends. She cheated again and I forgave her again. It’s never happened again we broke up a third time N came back together this time I believe it’s my fault all though I didn’t cheat. We came back recently and even had sex a few months ago but just a over alil arguments we had she said she needed to find herself and emotions and she’s being very distant offlate but if I do call or text she replies. Don’t know ow what to do.

    Lost Man

    • Your relationship has been nourished, changed, finished, and renewed. It is likely that she needs time to determine what she wants for her future. You may want to determine what you want for your future without her. If she reaches out to you, then share your kindness and compassion with her. If she wants to nourish a relationship with you again, then make a decision on what is appropriate and acceptable for your future. Have a great day, Sam!

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