Oh, the many struggles of millennial dating. Believe me, we get it. It seems like there’s always a new dating faux pas popping up that we have to watch out for every week. It’s enough to make you throw in the towel, get a bunch of cats and give up on the whole dating scene altogether. Right about now you’re probably thinking "NOOO, not another one." But yes, I hate to break it to you, there’s another one.
Who hasn’t heard of ghosting these days? You may have even been ghosted. It’s become all too familiar among millennials. Unfortunately, now you don’t only have to worry about being ghosted. Now there’s benching. Ok so maybe it’s not exactly a new concept. But it’s a situation I’m sure most of us have faced whether we realized it or not. It might even be worse than ghosting. I know, what’s worse than ghosting? Just hear me out. While ghosting is a total disappearing act, benching is stringing the other person along with just enough effort to keep them waiting. You know just in case they can’t find anything better. Ugh, could there be anything worse?
But don’t worry here are the definite signs that you’ve been benched:
15 Instead Of Texting You He Likes Or Comments On Your Social Media Accounts
Instead of putting in any effort to build a relationship with you – you know, because he’s just not sure it’s worth investing in- he does the absolute bare minimum by liking almost every single post and photo on all of your social media accounts. Basically, he is willing to do just enough to let you know that you’re still on his mind and that he’s paying attention to you. If this move makes you think ok maybe he’s wanting you to make the first move, think again. The second you fire off that text you might not receive a text back or at least in a decent amount of time. But you had better believe if you post a new selfie or funny meme he will be one of the first to like it. Wait, what?? He can’t text back but is clearly on social media. I know, and we’re just as confused as you. It’s man logic and we’ll never understand it.
14 He Gives You Lines
Ah, that classic line of “I really like you, I’m just not sure if I want a relationship right now.” If you are a little bit unsure of what this equates to, He’s basically saying it’s not so much that I don’t want a relationship as much as it is I’m just not sure I want a relationship with you. Essentially he’s leading you on. He wants to let you know that he is interested in you (i.e. attracted to you) in hopes that you’ll be willing to stick around while he’s trying to figure out whether or not he actually likes you. The reality of this situation is if he liked you he would know. There wouldn’t be reasons to give lines to keep you holding on to that sliver of hope for a relationship because you would be in a relationship with him.
13 Random Interactions
Your interactions are sporadic at best and always through the use of technology. In fact, you can’t remember the time you last heard his voice because phone conversations are nonexistent and actually seeing him in person- well, you can forget about that. But you have memorized his texting style. You can go days or even weeks without hearing from him only to receive a random text of “hey” or even just a few emojis. This will happen when he’s bored or if you post an attractive selfie. Oh, look what the selfie drug in. Yep, he’s going to be that guy. But while he feels like texting you now, after a while he’s going to go right back to the way it was when you didn’t hear from him. You can expect that almost every time you decide “I’m not wasting my time on him anymore.” He’s going to pop up and you’re going to want to see how it plays out.
12 He Cancels Plans
When he isn’t completely ignoring you and takes the time to make plans. You’ve come to expect that at the last minute he’s going to cancel. Because when date night has finally rolled around, you find yourself sitting on the couch watching Netflix with your hair tossed up in a messy bun and checking your phone every 5 minutes, instead of picking out the perfect outfit and spending an hour perfecting your contour. After all, there’s no rush because like every other time you’re waiting for that text saying he can’t make it tonight and you have to reschedule. You tell yourself next time will be different and he’ll follow through. But do you really believe that? Nope. Not in the least. You know next time will play out the same way until you tire of it and tell him bye.
11 He Won’t Return Phone Calls
The only time you hear from him is through text or social media. If you call him, you can guarantee he’s never going to take the time to dial your number and have an actual conversation. Oh, no. But you may be lucky enough to get a text later. Men may be known for their lack of enthusiasm when it comes to talking on the phone but when they like you they do try to make an effort to get to know you. You cannot. I repeat CAN NOT have a relationship if the only communication you have is through text. It simply can’t be done. Even though it may sound harsh, it’s the truth. If he isn’t putting in an effort, it’s because he’s not interested in dating you. You literally only stand a chance at this point if he never finds someone better. Do you really want to be his placeholder?
10 You’re Afraid To Scare Him Off
Maybe you are wanting to let him know that you would like to see him more or that you are really interested in him. Or maybe you just bring up the subject of where this relationship – or rather, lack thereof- is going. The only problem with that is he hasn’t given you much to go on in the realm of how he feels about you. Which has you nervous about saying or doing anything that he may perceive as clingy or trying to push him into a relationship. Because the last thing you want to do is scare him off. You hate that you feel like you have to play the dating games in order to keep him around. And you worry about whether or not you text him too often. But really how can texting him once be too often? You can’t help but be genuinely confused and it’s stressing you out.
9 He’s Always Busy
You’ve had quite a few plans with him either fall through or there hasn’t been any planned since your first date. So you take the initiative and see if he wants to hang out sometime. But it’s always the same thing. He’s too busy but would love to do something with you some other time. Except another time never happens. You’ve never met anyone who could be so busy. Seriously, what is this guy doing? I mean sure, there’s the chance that maybe he has a stressful job that requires a ton of his time and he has to bring work home. But more realistically he’s just not that interested in seeing you. There is literally no reason he would not be able to clear up at least few hours to go to dinner or just grab a cup of coffee. Remember ladies, if he liked you he would want to see you.
8 You Have No Idea Where Your Relationship Stands
You find yourself wondering is this relationship is going to go anywhere and are starting to debate if you’re wasting your time and should move on. Coming right out and asking him is a huge no go. This, after all, would compromise everything you’ve worked hard for. No, it’s best to sit back and over analyze everything. He must like you right? If he didn’t he wouldn’t be liking your Facebook posts and following you on Instagram. But why won’t he make an effort to see you? With so many questions and confusing signals that you’re getting from him, it’s enough to make a girl’s head spin. You could rack you brain forever trying to come up with an answer but the reality of it is that as it stands there is no relationship. He’s stringing you on just long enough to see if he can find something “better.”
7 He Pops Up Every Time You’re Talking To Another Guy
Now he’s made it blatantly obvious that he follows you on social media so there’s no way he isn’t going to take notice when another guy starts showing you attention. Once he sees that you’re chatting up or other guys – and he will - then jealousy will rear its ugly head. Because you see, men are competitive by nature and it’s not so much that he wants to be with you, it’s that he doesn’t want anyone else to be with you. He wants to know that you are there if he decides to go ahead and invest his time in you. But if you are with someone else then obviously that isn’t going to happen. So he has now made it his mission to get you focusing on him again. This will be one of those rare moments he’s willing to pick up the phone and ask you out. But you can expect that once he’s sure he’s got your full attention that he’s going to back off again and go back to his previous behavior.
6 He Treats You Like “One Of The Guys”
Of course, a guy wants a girl he’s comfortable around and that will make him feel like he can be himself without being judged. But there’s a line drawn here. Because if he’s interested in you on a romantic level he’s not going to treat you like you like you’re just one of his guy friends. Certain things are red flags for “you’ve just been bro-zoned.” If you happen to bump into him at the grocery store and you start chatting him up and he’s telling you about how him and his boys were going to go out to the club but got so drunk before they left that they zoned out and played video games all night before passing out and how so and so vomited all over the bathroom. Then you’ve been bro-zoned. If he’s telling you anything that should be reserved for friends and not someone you want to date, then guess what... You’ve been bro-zoned.
5 You Want to Text Him But Won’t Because He Never Responds
You texted him once the other day and again yesterday. You haven’t received a text back and you’re not sure it’s a good idea to try again. Your first thought is that maybe something happened and the text didn’t go through. So you check it. It definitely went through. Ok? So maybe you somehow texted the wrong number. Nope, definitely the right number. So you continue down this road of wondering what could have happened that prevented him reading your text. It is totally possible he lost his phone or was so busy that he read it and meant to respond but forgot. After all, we’ve all been there haven’t we? Texting him again might make you seem crazy. And no one wants to be the crazy girl. So you decide to wait. Every ding your phone makes sends your heart beating into a frenzy only to be disappointed that it’s not him. You then go back to struggling with the idea of texting him again. It’s an endless, frustrating cycle.
4 You Get The Feeling He’s Just Not That Into You
When it comes to relationships a good rule of thumb is to trust your instincts. I know you’ve heard the saying love is blind. And you don’t have to be in love with him for this saying to still ring true. When you’re into someone that you have to keep making excuses for as to why he isn’t showing you the attention you deserve, it should be a pretty obvious sign that he’s just not that into you. Here’s where your instincts will lead you in the right direction while you heart is telling you everything is going to be fine you just have to tough it out and he’ll come to you. Seriously, don’t listen to your heart on this one because you know that little feeling in the pit of your stomach. The one that makes you think somethings just not quite right? Yeah, that feeling. This is your body letting you know that something is up.
3 He Sends You Mixed Signals
Holy mother of mixed signals. Seriously this guy is all over the place. One minute he’s hot the next he’s cold. You have no idea what he’s going to throw at you next and reading him is impossible. Just when you think things are finally starting to go somewhere he backs off again. Leaving you to question your sanity. Because maybe you were misreading signs that weren’t there? Could it have been wishful thinking? Maybe you came on too strong. Hmm, I wonder If he’s going to text me today. Then just as quickly as he went cold it’s like a hot flash how quickly the texts start coming. When this happens it’s safe to assume that he met someone and was spending his time on them trying to get a feel for if they were a better match for him. He knew that if it didn’t work out with her he could weasel his way back into your good graces and pick up where he left off. Not cool boys.
2 You Know You Are Definitely Not A Priority
It’s not that you can’t see the potential of having a serious relationship with him – because let’s be honest you wouldn’t be wasting your precious time on him otherwise. It’s just that You have literally no idea where you stand with him. Actually, the only thing you do know for sure is that you are definitely not a priority for him. It’s a harsh reality but something that you must come to terms with. Because unlike when you’re ghosted you never really get to have a firm grasp on the ‘bencher’s” intentions. He seems interested… sometimes. Then he doesn’t. It’s frustrating. Just when you get your hopes up thinking “yes, I’m in, this is definitely happening.” It doesn’t. If he cared about you in the least or was interested in beginning a relationship with you, you would know. You would feel like you held at least some importance in his life.
1 They Aren’t Hiding The Fact They Are Seeing Other People
He’s already told you that he’s not sure he’s interested in getting into a relationship so this gives him the option to date around and play the field without any guilt. And since you want to come off as the cool girl that he can’t help but want to be with, you’re going to act like you don’t care. Sure, he can go ahead and see what’s out there. You’re cool with it...right? He may even chat with you about people he’s seeing – through text messages of course. But you shouldn’t have to wait around for a relationship that will probably never happen anyway. If he can’t make up his mind and choose you, then you have to make up yours to walk away and find someone who’s worth your time. Besides if he can play the field, so can you. And you are too good to be put second best.