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It's Not You...But?

Updated on October 13, 2014
Miss-Adventures profile image

My passion is writing about love, sex, dating, and relationships. I write based on my own personal experiences and those that I relate to.

"But" is the most annoying word when someone is trying to end things with you....

"You're so great, But...."
"You are the best thing that's ever happened to me, But.."
"I love spending time with you, But..."
"You are important to me, But..."
"I really like you, But..."
"I think you're so amazing, But..."
"You're so beautiful, But..."
"I really care about you, But..."
"I can't imagine my life without you, But..."

Most people have been guilty of using the But syndrome when ending a relationship because they think it softens the inevitable break-up blow. But… doesn't.

The truth is, if someone thinks you are so great, they wouldn't be ending the relationship to begin with.

Not every relationship is meant to last—some relationships are learning lessons to help you grow in life, or for the next relationship that is coming. Unfortunately, many men will sugarcoat what they are feeling so they don't walk away leaving a bad impression. This doesn't serve anyone, and frankly makes him look even worse in your eyes—especially if he has cut off communication for days before having "the talk."

I'm not saying that a guy shouldn't approach a break-up with respect and kindness—of course he should. There is a big difference between giving you the typical, "It's not you, But..." speech, which cannot possibly benefit either of you, and giving you an honest and up front reason why he wants to terminate your relationship—although painful and ego bruising to hear, this way is always better in the end.

How can you improve yourself if you don't have an honest reason why the breakup occurred?

If a guy can take the time to date you, he should also take the time to tell you exactly why the relationship doesn't fit for him anymore—like a comment card with constructive criticism. Of course using this approach doesn't mean that during the relationship he sits in silence. He should not wait until the end of a relationship to give you feedback if he is bothered by something you have said or done. This behavior would make him immature and selfish, in addition to being a poor choice for you.

When a guy tells you on the first (or possibly second date) that his schedule is really busy—and you express that you are willing to work around His schedule (not yours) in order to see him—is it fair for him to use the obvious fact (to you both) that he's really busy when breaking up with you?

If you've been dating a guy for at least two months or longer and have been working around his schedule, and he claims that the relationship still isn't working for him—even though you have gone out of your way to fit into his schedule—then he needs to be honest about why, other than the fact that his schedule is really, really busy. That excuse might have had merit if he told you this two weeks (or less) into dating—but not two months after dating.

You can tell a women what you're feeling, but you can't tell a woman how she's feeling.

I've seen this happen often in relationships, when a guy will sneakily put the blame on a woman (to make himself feel less guilty) for why it "might not work." But you can't break-up with someone and put the onus on them.... "You're a great person, you're amazing and I love spending time with you, But, with my crazy schedule and everything going on with me, I'm not sure that it's enough for you or what you're looking for." Are you kidding me!?

Instead of blaming you, if his schedule is truly the reason why he is ending things (which usually is a bunch of bull) then the better response (and more believable and honest) from him should be, "I can tell that you have been trying really hard to fit our dating into my schedule, however this is not working for me because....."

Unless his schedule has changed dramatically from when you first started dating, why all of a sudden would his schedule be a concern?

I dated a guy who not only told me when we first dated how busy his schedule was, he also told me that he really liked me and therefore wanted to see how things could potentially develop. Hearing this put a huge smile on my face. I was very attracted to him, the chemistry was magnetic and he was a nice guy. Being around him felt organic so I was willing to work around his schedule (and he had many things he was juggling on a daily basis).

The first month of dating was great. We would see each other a few times during the week, have communication daily, and even FaceTime when we could. There was a strong physical, mental and emotional connection. Right when he was telling me how busy he couldn't believe his schedule was—he added one more activity onto his schedule that would take up his used-to-be totally free weekend time. Although this didn't make much sense to me, I supported his decisions, with some concerns.

I wanted to make sure that being in a relationship was really what he wanted and had time for. I asked him if he was feeling stressed with our relationship—trying to figure out ways to fit me in with everything else he already had on his plate. I also told him that if we needed to take a step back from how often we saw each other until his schedule was less hectic, I totally understood.

He assured me that some of his obligations would lighten up in a few weeks, and his overall schedule would be more open in less than three months. He even went a step further by telling me that he really liked me—that I was important in his life, and he wanted to make me a priority. This made my heart swoon. Until....

One week later, not only did he disappear for several days—he honored me with the But speech. Listing all the wonderful qualities that I possessed, (as if I didn't know) while telling me how he assumed I was feeling. Terrific.

When a guy tells you how you are feeling, what's left for you to say? Absolutely nothing! The guy I dated obviously had it all figured out, and knew exactly what I was thinking (even though he never asked), and how I was feeling (without asking) and what I wanted (again, without asking). Wow, only after several months of dating he knew me better than I knew myself. Impressive—I didn't realize I was dating a psychic!

Although some men will deliver the But speech without thinking, and have regrets later—don't hold your breath for him to change his mind. If he's realized that he has made a mistake—he will work hard to gain your trust again, as well as your heart.

Ladies, the truth is that But either negates the statement that is said before, or it's a qualifier, i.e. "you're a beautiful woman, But you shouldn't wear so much makeup." The only But(t) you should want—is on your own body or possibly his. If he can only talk about you or your relationship—using the word But, then I guess he's a great boyfriend—But, not really.


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    • Dr Billy Kidd profile image

      Dr Billy Kidd 

      6 years ago from Sydney, Australia

      dashingscorpio, yes I get what you're saying. I need to ask those who complain about being successful and dateless more questions, maybe get to the bottom of it. Maybe not.

      Still, that's the second most frequent problem I'm asked about when giving presentations (except at Mensa conferences, where the questions could rattle the average person's brain). The most frequent question is, "Where are all the men?" These questions come from women 30 years and older. Go figure.

    • dashingscorpio profile image


      6 years ago from Chicago

      Dr Billy Kidd, There may be (some) men that feel that way. However I believe if a successful woman is also attractive, warm, friendly, takes an genuine interest in others, and has a great sense humor....etc Most men aren't going to hold her "success" against her. :)

      I once saw a posting from a woman who was having problems dating. She stated her standard introduction to men included emailing them her (LinkedIn profile). First of all that seems like a "cold" or chilly introduction for my taste.

      It also can be interpreted as though she is looking for someone to (compete with) rather than to (be with). Lastly it's not wise to provide too much information about oneself early on especially if it's through an online dating website. LinkedIn provides past and current information regarding place of employment and schools attended among other things.

      If a woman is attractive, has an easy going personality with a great sense of humor and is enjoyable to be around I would find her career success to be "icing on the cake"! On the other hand if she is standoffish, aloof, or there is no chemistry and I don't enjoy being around her then I would choose not to see her. It wouldn't have anything to do with her being "intimidating" though.

    • Dr Billy Kidd profile image

      Dr Billy Kidd 

      6 years ago from Sydney, Australia

      Dashingscorpio, I've had women ask me, "Why do men find successful women to be intimidating?" Many of these women are attractive. Best I can think of is that the guy somehow thinks he's supposed to be the boss and pay for the date, etc--to boost his flagging ego.

    • Miss-Adventures profile imageAUTHOR

      Stephanie Bailey 

      6 years ago from Denver

      Thank you Dr. Billy Kidd!

      I do agree that men who claim they have busy schedules will fit a woman in when they can't find another woman to have sex with, or frankly, when other plans have been cancelled with friends, family, etc...ridiculous!

      Thank you for reading, as well as commenting.

    • Miss-Adventures profile imageAUTHOR

      Stephanie Bailey 

      6 years ago from Denver

      Thank you dashingscorpio.

      I 100% agree that, " if a man thinks you're worth the effort he'll make the effort. Kings have fought wars and abdicated their thrones to be with the women they love. " Amen to that!!!

      Usually when a guys schedule "all of a sudden" becomes busier it's because he has lost interest in the's not rocket science. :)

      I've also said something similar to this in many articles, "if a can't find a few hours on the weekend to spend time with his girlfriend it's because he doesn't want to." Personally for me, if a guy can't or won't find time to see me on the weekends I emotionally check out and will continue to date other men. Where one guy won't make time...another man will. :) ---

      that is why it's better to date longer in order to see how invested a guy will really be. Usually, after 3-6 months you will know how invested (or not) he truly is.

      Thank you as always for reading and commenting.

    • Dr Billy Kidd profile image

      Dr Billy Kidd 

      6 years ago from Sydney, Australia

      Good advice!

      I've counseled women who get told that his schedule changed and he cannot make the date. In reality, he generally fits her in when he can't find anybody else to have sex with.

      My favorite on the psychic thing was when the woman said of her spouse--right in front of him--"Do you mean like when Bobby tells me how to think?" He took it in stride, and she just shook her head, as they both dumped the thing into my lap. Such are the trills of being a couples counselor!

    • dashingscorpio profile image


      6 years ago from Chicago

      Very interesting;

      Generally speaking I'm a big fan of "be yourself". Too often when a person gets dumped they are looking for their future ex to "slam" them or point out some flaw in their character. As you stated:

      "How can you improve yourself if you don't have an honest reason why the breakup occurred?"

      The goal is to find someone who will love and accept you as you are. I've seen it where a person obliges the other by running off a list of reasons why they're dumping someone only to have that person beg/plead while promising to change themselves!

      I suspect weeks, months, or even years later they still kick themselves for reacting that way to the breakup. No matter what words a guy or woman uses the results are the same; "I don't see you as being (the one) for me!"

      Many men have been told to "sugarcoat" things when dealing women. Some guys even use the old line; "You're so independent that I find you somewhat intimidating." The woman walks away feeling good about herself with her head held high while tells the world; "The reason I'm alone is because men are intimidated by me."

      Truth be told if a guy thinks you are "hot" and he loves spending time with you he is not going to dump you. On the other hand if he's bored with the relationship, has his eye on another, or is already seeing someone else then he is going to try to exit while stroking your ego.

      As for the guy with the busy schedule... I believe if a man thinks you're worth the effort he'll make the effort. Kings have fought wars and abdicated their thrones to be the women they love. If a guy can't find a few hours on the weekend to spend time with his girlfriend it's because he doesn't want to!


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