In recent years the dating stories I have been hearing all sound very similar—after 2 or 3 months of casually dating a girl, the guy started to get the hint that the girl wanted something more serious. The girl wanted it to become a committed boyfriend/girlfriend type of relationship, and the guy cut it off because he said he just wasn’t “ready,” or something to that extent. In some of these cases it could be that the guy just wasn’t that into her for something long term. However, in many of these stories it becomes clear that while the guy genuinely really cared for and liked the girl (e.g., introduced her to his friends and talked every day), other preoccupations got in his way. That’s the thing with your twenties: you’re still figuring things out. There’s a lot of pressure in society (and in human nature) for men to be established, successful, and have been with a lot of women by the time they “settle down.” Here are the three reasons that twentysomething year old men – er, shall we say “boys” – don’t want to have girlfriends, apart from the golden rule of “he’s just not that into you.”

1. Friends, Career and other priorities Men in their twenties put a lot of attention and value into their “boys time.” That need they have to spend time with the guys goes away as they get older and start prioritizing their romantic relationship. This is also the age that you get out of college and start your career. They feel the pressure because they are at the bottom of the ladder trying to work their way up. They are trying to find their place in the world in the career or job of their choice. Friends and Career are often a reason men this age do not want long term relationships so they can focus on other priorities and not on love.

2. Emotionally unavailable/immature—seeking experiences for what they look for in a long term girlfriend Men at this age are very immature emotionally (usually). They also have a tendency to not be available emotionally because it is such an evolving period of their lives. They could be getting out of another relationship, transitioning to a new job, moving to a new city etc. All of these stressors can interfere with them feeling emotionally ready for a girlfriend. They also don’t know what they want and are looking for what they want in a long term girlfriend by being single and dating around, even if they are doing it without conscious awareness.

3. Sexual commitment/Time—seeking sexual experiences. Men at this age are in their sexual prime, and are therefore constantly in pursuit of novel sexual experience. They also don’t have a ticking biological clock, so they know they have time to settle down and to be sexually monogamous with a girl in the future. They also don’t have the pressure to be committed because, let’s face it, many women in New York have no problem with casual sex and so men don’t feel the need to have a girlfriend to have sex regularly.

The average twentysomething year old guy could not want a girlfriend for one of these reasons or maybe even all three. These reasons were inspired by my own past dating experiences and by most of my current single girlfriends experiencing these issues in NYC today. However, these reasons go beyond NYC dating and can be extended to universal Western modern dating cultures. So what happens now if you are dating a guy in his twenties who is very focused on his career to the point he doesn’t have time for you, or maybe he rather spend time with his friends in his free time, and/or maybe he sleeps around with other girls? Well the message I am sending is this—respect yourself enough to walk away from someone that isn’t making you happy because he’s not there for you the way you’d like. You are his “part-time,” “downtime,” or “sometime” and you want a committed boyfriend. If the guy isn’t giving that to you move on to the next because they aren’t even worth your time! One day, you will find that guy who doesn’t have one or all of these three reasons for not wanting a girlfriend. One day.