What Does Taking It Slow Mean To A Guy? (5+ Possible Explanations)

Last updated on June 18, 2022 by April Maccario

In today’s world, dating is harder than ever, especially for established adults. We live in an age where most relationships start online, in a whirlwind of multiple suitors and fast-start relationships and romances swirling towards a vortex of doom. 

So when you finally have a guy you’re actually interested in, it’s hard not to get excited about the possibility of a true connection with another human. And let’s be honest - that excitement makes us want to dive right off the edge of the world and straight into his arms. 

But true love doesn’t always work that way. 

So when your possible new significant other says he wants to take things slow, or he wants to get to know you before getting on the commitment level, it can be so disappointing, and even distrust. 

And in today’s fast-paced world, people have forgotten how to take a relationship slow. So when you have already found yourself fantasizing and hearing wedding bells, and he says the three words opposite of what you want to hear, a lot of questions can creep into your mind and plant evil seeds of doubt. 

Taking It Slow Is A Good Thing

But before you cry yourself to sleep, think about the good things that taking things slow can provide. Guys are completely different than girls and don’t tend to fall head over heels in love as fast as a woman. 

When we hear wedding bells, men see caution signs. And while we are naming our future children, they are wondering just how committed you both actually are. But never fear, most of the reasons guys like to enjoy things that are slow are good things - and if he wants to take your relationship at the speed of turtle he just wants to make sure that you are the one and only. Usually.

What Does It Mean When He Wants To Take It Slow?

1. He is getting to know you

He is getting to know you

Whether you met online or offline first, it takes a while to truly get to know someone. And take it from the relationship experts, a relationship built off of friendship is the most stable and long-lasting. A lot of guys want to take things slow because he’s not really looking for that explosive, passionate, probably destined to fail intense relationship. 

Passion and fireworks can come later, after he’s had the chance to get to know if you are the same level if you are compatible if he can trust you, and he can make sure that your relationship is going to bloom instead wither. 

While women dream of that Cinderella-type relationship, mature men want to know that they can count on you to be their partner, to be strong when they are weak, and you will be there for them on their own comfort level. When guys are done checking the names off in their black book and taking notches out of their belt, they want a woman who is going to take things as seriously as he is. 

For men, it’s not just about the feeling of love and the feeling of not being alone - for them, it’s the beginning of the start of what they consider family. And men who are in that zone have a strong tendency to take things slow so they can catch the red flags, and make sure that the relationship is going to survive the trials and tribulations you two will surely face. 

2. He may have others

A guy who has been single for a while does not just have one maiden in waiting for his heart. Once again, men are much different than women - where most of us who are searching for that lost piece of our soul, men are out collecting as many of them as possible until he finds the one he wants to get to know on a more personal level. 

If the relationship is new girls, do not take this offensively. Someone may take this as he is a player, but really he may have been fishing casually until someone special comes along. And in fact, that is how a lot of guys handle things when it comes to relationships. Most of the time, men are not actively looking for love, it usually crashes into them unexpectedly. 

So if he is into taking things slow, there may be some people he needs to let down and disappoint - but before he burns his bridges he is going to want to make absolutely sure the relationship is something he wants. 

3. He’s doing a commitment check 

Once again, men who are uncertain about themselves and their feelings will want to take things slow. And that doesn’t mean that he’s not interested, or he won’t eventually be dedicated to your relationship, it just means he’s uncertain. Men will take things one day at a time, as there are a lot of things he has to be sure of. 

While you want to take things up a notch, he may be getting in tune with his emotions - which is a lot scarier for men then it is for women. Emotions mean vulnerability, and that is something people tend to forget that men are just not good at. In a world where vulnerability means weakness to the male species, taking things slow is a good way to protect himself, and even you.

And not every attraction lasts. If one of you loses interest, or a fast-paced relationship turns into just another routine and habit, then it’s not a relationship that will last. So remember that taking things slow can be a great way to start a solid relationship with a strong foundation.

4. Lust and love are not the same 

A lot of times, if a man wants to take it slow, it also could be because if he becomes physically intimate too fast he wouldn’t be able to establish an emotional connection. Sex does not work the same way for men as it does for women. And when a man is taking his time getting to know you, it means he wants to establish a deeper connection, and sex could confuse that

Intimacy, lust, love, when you combine them all it can be confusing if the relationship is new. So if you take it slow, that boundary can be clear when it comes time to cross the line. For men, lust and love are separated and they don’t need one for the other to occur. When a man says he’s into taking things slow, it could be simply that early physical intimacy blurs the line on the real connection for him. 

For women who are in the thrall of a new relationship, this is something that is hard for them to separate, but men are able to keep things on the steady - when they choose to. 

5. His heart may have been broken before

I don’t know many people who have not been burned in previous relationships. And here is something of a secret that people don’t know: Men break just as hard as women do. If he has been in love, and someone did him wrong, he may be scared to commit or die into something new. And who could blame him, because haven’t we all been there? 

The thing about women, is our hearts are a lot more versatile than men. Guys heal slower, it takes them longer, and in a way of speaking it only takes one heartbreak for a man’s heart to be a hard wall to conquer. This is where taking the time for getting to know each other becomes so important - you don’t know what he’s been through, and he may just be being careful. 

When a guy says he wants to take it slow, try to keep your disappointment contained and realize he may still be dealing with pain caused by someone else in his past. You also could remind him in small ways of that certain someone, which may cause him to want to tap the brakes.

6. Friendship is the strongest foundation of a relationship

Friendship is the strongest foundation of a relationship

Sometimes when a man says: “I want to take our relationship slow.” It could simply mean that with absolutely no underlying meaning. In an article, I previously wrote about the foundations of a healthy relationship, trust, friendship, commitment, communication are all detrimental to long-lasting happy relationships. 

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People get excited when someone new comes along and ignites romantic feelings. But If you want to take it slow, and create a healthy friendship before jumping into a relationship, then you will most likely find love survives for longer and flourishes stronger because of that. 

A relationship can’t be based on sex or puppy love and expect to last forever. Initial infatuation is a great indicator that there is a potential relationship in the making, but people always forget that infatuation-at-first-sight is not the kind of love you need for a stable relationship.

In fact, how are you supposed to love someone you don’t even know? If you don’t know if you can tolerate the way they chew their food, how do you know anything else?

Taking Things Slow - Take Advantage Of The Situation

A slow starting relationship is a perfect way to make sure that you are emotionally and mentally healthy, and the relationship is something that you would like to proceed with. There is nothing more disappointing than a whirlwind romance you thought was more serious than it actually was, that simmers down into an anticlimatic backward step in your love life. 

Take the time to look for red flags, do commitment checks, and take mental notes on where you are mentally and emotionally. And enjoy every moment of that slow forming bond, because that may be the bond you have been searching for all along. 


What does taking it slow mean?

Taking things slowly in relationships means that the relationship is just new, and one party is not certain if this is the route they want to take. He could be shy, he could be emotionally overwhelmed, he may be searching for his soul mate. There could be a hundred different reasons for someone to need this, but it does not mean they are not interested. 

What does taking it slow mean to a girl?

Sometimes for women when a man says he wants to take it slow can cause catastrophic doubt, as she can translate this as something against her personally. But this is not always the case, and if you can work through the initial panic that those words cause, you’ll most likely find a slow relationship means a stable relationship.

How do you take things slow with a new guy?

People have forgotten what it was like in the old days when women were traditionally properly wooed by men. Men would court their lady love and they weren’t allowed to go on dates alone, or hold hands, or kiss each other until they were betrothed - and sometimes not even until they were married. 

In today’s modern, technology ruled world, relationships are usually off to a fast, catastrophic start. Taking things slowly with a new guy means friendship, which is one of the biggest key components to a happy, healthy, loving relationship.

What does a guy mean when he says he wants to take it slow but you already slept together?

If a guy has slept with you and wants to take it slow, he may not be committed to going further than that in the relationship, or he may have confused himself on how he feels. Most men are not good at sorting through emotions, and sometimes sex has a tendency of blurring lines he thought he understood. 

There is also sometimes the case where he has 'gotten what he wanted' and saying he wants to take things slow is a way of letting you down easy. This is not always the case, but you should be able to tell by his body language and how he deals with you from then on. If you are searching for love, it’s never advisable to jump straight into bed with someone.

How do you know if a guy is leading you on?

Men are pretty easy to read when it comes to telling if he is really into you or not. Men who are genuinely interested will go out of their way to make sure you know it, or if they are too shy, they will be very slow in their approach.

A man who leads you on tells you everything you want to hear, right when you want to hear it. But his actions will not follow through with his beautiful words of companionship and intimacy. He will get what he wants, and he will be single-mindedly orientated around that one goal. 

If you learn only one thing from this article then remember this: the art of seduction is simply that. Seduction. And if a man starts out with seducing you with sweet-nothings instead of showing you sincerity, then that is not a road you want to take.

To Put It All Together...

Did your significant other tell you he wanted to take things slow? If so, where does your relationship stand now? Did it make your relationship better, or did it drive you crazy? 

We want to hear your love stories in our comments - and don’t forget to share with your friends! 

Do you hate it how everything seems to always revolve round him while you just seem to be an afterthought sometimes?
We hear this all the time from women that contact us asking for help with their relationship.

It almost makes you wonder whether he actually likes you or whether he's just stringing you along.

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April Maccario
I'm a huge nerd when it comes to understanding how relationships between men and women work, and what drives a certain behavior. I spend much of my time getting into the nitty-gritty and try to share my findings on this site with the hope of making life a little easier for women that are struggling in their relationships or love life.

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