Is what he says what he means?

Men are, on the whole, neither manipulative nor devious. What they say is usually pretty close to what they mean. It’s just that what they say isn’t always crystal clear to us, because they don’t want to hurt our feelings (and provoke an emotional scene as a result). So they try to say what they mean in a way that won’t actually make us freak out.

So is what he says what he means? Well, the view from man-land is: women are emotional; men are logical (and feel ineffably superior). And so men tend to go after what they want in a fairly straight line.

So if your man is giving what you see as “mixed signals”, the chances are that he’s trying to tell you that you aren’t the love of his life as tactfully as possible. It doesn’t do to over-analyze what men say, and it’s most unlikely that there’s any deep meaning hidden behind his words. What he says is pretty much what he means.

But What She Says…

Women, on the other hand, are elliptical rather than direct. They will often hint at their true meaning instead of saying it directly.

A woman will say to her friend: “I think being a bit curvier suits you” rather than “You’re putting on weight, perhaps you ought to think about dieting”. But both will understand what she’s really saying.

A man though would be more likely to take it literally, as a compliment.

The result is a lot of misunderstanding.

Women can spend hours looking for subtle meanings in men’s simplest words. Ladies, there aren’t any. When he says he doesn’t want a serious relationship, he means it. He’s not challenging you to try to change his mind.

Nevertheless it’s inevitable that a woman will still look for hidden meanings in a man’s lightest utterance. This is usually because she doesn’t want to believe what he said, because what he said wasn’t what she actually wanted to hear.

So for the benefit of those women who don’t appreciate men’s sincerely meant efforts to tell the truth, whilst still remaining polite and tactful; here is a translation of their most commonly misunderstood gems.

1: What he says: “I’ll call you.”

What he means: “I won’t call you. I just had to say something to end the conversation and that sounded about right.”

2: What he says: “I’ll call you later.”

What he means: “I might call you, when I have time and if I remember.”

3: What he says: “I don’t want to ruin our friendship.”

What he means: “I’ve never thought of dating you, and I never will, but you’re my friend and I don’t want to hurt your feelings.”

4: What he says: “Let’s hang out sometime.”

What he means: “I want to ask you for a date, but I’m not 100% sure you’ll say yes, so I’m trying to check out how you feel about it.”

5: What he says: “You’re the most beautiful girl I’ve ever seen.”

What he means:

When you’ve just met: “Can we have sex?”

When he’s known you for a while: “I think you’re gorgeous and I love being with you. Can we have sex?”

6: What he says: “I don’t care.”

What he means: “It really doesn’t matter to me. I’m happy to do whatever you want. When it IS a big deal, I’ll tell you. So PLEASE just tell me what you want to do tonight.”

7: What he says: “I was only kidding.”

What he means: “You were supposed to think I was kidding. Only another man should have realized I was saying something profoundly true.”

8: What he says: “I didn’t mean it like that.”

What he means: “I did mean it like that, but I wasn’t expecting you to be so upset. What’ve I said anyway?” To him it’s trivial, and he can’t be bothered to fight over it.

9: What he says: “She’s just a friend.”

What he means: “She’s still on my “to do” list.”

10: What he says: “Who? Oh, I didn’t even notice her…”

What he means: “I just about managed to get my jaw back in place before you noticed. Of course I think she’s hot, but it doesn’t mean I’d rather be with her than with you. I’ll have forgotten her in less than 5 minutes.”

11: What he says: “Look, I’m sorry.”

What he means: “I’m sick of arguing, can we move on to the hot make-up sex now?”

12: What he says: “Can we talk about this later?”

What he means: “Can we drop the subject – permanently – please?”

13: What he says: “My ex was kind of crazy.”

What he means: “If you’re the type who turns every minor setback into a major emotional drama, I’m outta here.”

14: What he says: “I never masturbate.”

What he means: “I’m trying to cut it down to twice a day – three times at weekends.”

15: What he says: “I never watch porn.”

What he means: “Women just don’t understand about porn and I don’t want to be made to feel like some kind of pervert. It’s not as if I’m addicted. Sorry, but it’s so much easier just to lie.”

16: What he says: “I don’t know.”

What he means: “I can’t answer truthfully as it would get me into far too much trouble – whatever I say.”

17: What he says: “It’s a guy thing.”

What he means: “I can’t explain it in any way you would understand. It’s not a big deal; it’s just something I like. Can we drop it please?”

18: What he says: “You look incredible in that dress.”

What he means: “PLEASE can we go now?”

19: What he says: “I like a girl who doesn’t wear any makeup.”

What he means: “I hate it when girls wear so much makeup they look like clowns. I still want you to look your best; I just don’t want it to be obvious.”

20: What he says: “I love watching you eat.”

What he means: “I don’t think you’re fat, I just love a girl who actually enjoys her food. It’s incredibly sexy, and as you actually eat normal food it means I can finish what you don’t want. You’re perfect!”

21: What he says: “Maybe we should think about exercising.”

What he means: “You’re getting fat.”

22: What he says: “I’m not really looking for a relationship right now.”

What he means: “I’m really only looking for sex. We can see where this goes, but I’m not really thinking about the future right now. Is that OK?”

23: What he says: “I’ve been busy.”

What he means: “I’m not interested enough to make time to see you.”

24: What he says: “I don’t like putting relationship stuff on Facebook.”

What he means: “I don’t want the other women I know to think I’m in a relationship. Because in my mind at least, I’m not.”

25: What he says: “I’m confused about this relationship.”

What he means: “I don’t think you’re the right woman for me, and I’m thinking about breaking up with you.”

26: What he says: “I’m emotionally unavailable.”

What he means: “Please end this relationship before I have to.”

27: What he says: “We need to take a break.”

What he means: “This is your last chance to dump me – before I dump you.”

28: What he says: “It’s not you, it’s me.”

What he means: “It is you.”

29: What he says: “Can I give you a massage?”

What he means: “Can we have sex?”

30: What he says: “Let me cook for you tonight.”

What he means: “Come over to my place so we can have sex.” (Still, it’s one up on “Netflix and chill”.)

31: What he says: “I’m a bit tired.”

What he means: “Of course I still want to have sex, but can you take care of the foreplay?”

32: What he says: “How many men have you slept with?”

What he means: “Please don’t tell me how many men you’ve slept with. I don’t want to sabotage this relationship. I’m just afraid you’ll think I’m a complete novice, and I want to look as cool as James Bond. Please don’t tell me what I don’t want to hear.”

33: What he says: “I’m not angry.”

What he means: “I’m really annoyed, but I’ll get over it. Let’s not make it into a big thing, OK?”

34: What he says: “I’m OK.”

What he means: “Please don’t interfere with my problem. I need to solve it myself.

35: What he says: “Nothing’s wrong.”

What he means: “I can’t explain what’s wrong because I don’t understand my feelings myself.”

36: What he says: “What’s wrong?”

What he means: “Tell me the quickest way to put things right. I don’t want to know the reasons. I just want to stop fighting so that we can have sex and make things OK again.”

37: What he says: “My friend Rob’s having a party on Saturday. Can you come?”

What he means: “I want you to meet my friends. I think you’re an amazing girl, and I’m expecting them to be madly envious of me.”

38: What he says: “How do you know that guy?

What he means: “Have you had sex with him?”

39: What he says: “I really like you.”

What he means: “You’re great fun and I love having sex with you, but I’m not thinking about anything serious. Can we just go on having great sex together?”

40: What he says: “I love you.”

What he means:

When said during sex: “That was some of the greatest sex I’ve ever had, and almost blew my brains out. Can we do it again?”

When said at other times: “You’re amazing. I’m crazy about you and I don’t want to see anyone else. If I don’t sober up soon, I’ll even start using the M word. Yabba dabba doo!!!”

What He Says vs What He Means

Finding your way through the things men say should be easy. When it isn’t, it’s usually because we want him to mean the opposite of what he seems to be saying. And what he seems to be saying is that he might not be seeing you again tomorrow.

Or the next day.

In fact, he’s not sure when he’ll be seeing you again.

When you feel a man pulling away from you like this, its hard to know what you can do to bring him back. But there is a way. Click here to find out what it is.

28 thoughts on “What He Says, What He Means: 40 Things Guys Say and What They Really Mean

  1. What does it mean when he says he’ll
    do anything for you?

    1. It usually means he wants something in return.

  2. What does he mean when he says “Do we have to be together for me to be there for you?””I love you and want to be there for you”

    1. Maybe he has a crush on you but saying something like that to a girl who isn’t your girlfriend can be a bit of a red flag. Proceed with caution.

    2. almost it makes me think there is a fear of commitment and wanting to keep options open almost like your a side piece and that’s all you will be to that person but they don’t want to tell you directly that they fear you will no longer want to have sex or keep in contact with them if they tell you. It almost makes me think of a friends with benefits thing or an on dial booty call but you don’t know you’re just a booty call however I could be wrong about that and it could just mean he needs some space that you don’t need to do everything together that you are being too clingy is another way he’s saying things too.

      1. Here’s another take on it.

  3. What does he mean when u were going on dates for a month then he says he is not looking for a relationship but we can still going out with her friends and have fun , and I said no its okay and then next day he look for you at house , ask you if u want to grab some coffee and talk but he doesn’t say anything about the night before , was he apologizing or what does he wants?

    1. He’s probably just hoping that there are no hard feelings between you. It sounds as if he likes you but not enough to want you to be his girlfriend.

  4. What does he mean when he say I understand if you want to leave.

    1. See item 27.

  5. I asked if he doing anything fun for weekend? He said ‘no nothing’ then i asked if he want to go coffee. Then he said ‘what time?’ Then I proceeded to tell him the time. Then he said ‘that time i will be golfing but next time!’ What does he means?

    1. He means golf comes first, but since you’ve asked, he wouldn’t mind having coffee when he’s got nothing better to do.

    2. What does he really mean when he says “I got to go and take care of something” but doesn’t give any specifics as to what that “something” is?

      1. It means he wants to be somewhere else.

  6. We have had issues and he keeps telling me he is busy whenever I call .when I ask him whether he doesn’t want to talk to me he gets upset and asks whether I don’t know the difference between busy and not wanting to talk , what should I do

    1. Discover the difference between being busy and not wanting to talk.

  7. Obviously he doesn’t say what he means reading all the above…

    1. No, not when he thinks it’ll get him into trouble. But when men don’t usually do is speak elliptically; so when women spend hours trying to find hidden meanings in what they said they are wasting their time. However, what you say has occurred to me more than once since I wrote this article.

  8. What does it mean when your boyfriend says “you’re awesome”. Our relationship is actually really great compared to others I’ve been in, and I’ve just never had a guy say that before

    1. Men usually say what they mean, and when he says ‘you’re awesome’ he probably means ‘you’re awesome’. It’s a compliment. Accept it graciously and be happy.

  9. What does it mean if he says I do something to him no other girl has ever done before?

    1. Maybe you irritate him. Maybe you make him feel great. Maybe you drive him up the wall. It depends on the context.

  10. What does this mean when a man say she’s my female friend and I like her.

    1. Maybe he means what he says – men usually do. Don’t go looking for hidden meanings in what men say, there aren’t any.

  11. What does it mean when a guy say’s he can do better?

    1. It depends on the context. If you want a relationship with him and that is his response, you should walk away immediately. If you’ve just had sex and it was a disaster, he’s negotiating for a second chance; probably to soothe his bruised ego but possibly because it really mattered to him and he’s afraid you won’t want to see him again.

  12. What does it mean when a guy likes you tell you that you need a man in your life?

    1. Maybe it means he’d like to be that man. Maybe it means he thinks all women need a man in order to function at all. Maybe it means something in between. It’s something that can only be known by the context and the way in which it was said. And you were there when he said it.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.