What Are the Most Obvious Signs That Your Boyfriend Is Trying to Dump You?

If your boyfriend's been acting critical and unaffectionate, these are signs something's up.
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Unfortunately, not all guys are upfront and honest when their feelings for their girlfriends change. In a perfect world, every boyfriend would have a respectful break-up conversation. But in reality, many guys will exhibit certain behaviors -- maybe in the hope that you'll catch on and end things first, or maybe to start a fight, and use that as an excuse to end things. Or, at other times, he may not even be aware of how he's acting. These signs are usually major red flags that your boyfriend is in a break-up mindset.

1 He Prefers Group Dates

If dates suddenly have become group gatherings, this may indicate a break-up on the horizon, said New York-based writer Lisa Lombardi in her Match.com article, "6 Signs He's About to Dump You." For example, maybe every Friday night for months it's been just the two of you going to movies and dinners out -- and all of a sudden, he's suggesting football games and bowling with his buddies, and inviting you to tag along. If he's flirty with other girls in the group, or seems unfocused on you, this likely shows mind is elsewhere.

2 He's Critical

Another sign of a disconnect is if he's critical of you -- but never used to be, Diana Kirschner. who is a psychologist and author of "Opening Love's Doors" said in an interview with Lombardi. If he rolls his eyes at you and picks on you for small things, these aren't good signs. Gurl.com writer Jessica Booth noted in her article, "8 Signs Your Boyfriend Wants to Break Up With You," that guys on the verge of a breakup will often blame you for everything, or seem annoyed at everything you do.

3 He's Hard to Reach

Boyfriends contemplating a breakup are often difficult to reach, noted Dr. Kirschner. He might seem annoyed when you call him, or take a day or two to respond to texts when he used to write you back in minutes. He might also suddenly become so busy with school and work that he has to cancel plans. Also notable is if your boyfriend stops texting, messaging or calling to check in or say goodnight, which shows you've fallen off his radar, said Paul Dobransky, M.D, director of Men's Happiness and author of "The Secret Psychology of How We Fall In Love" in an interview with Cosmopolitan's Kelly Thore.

4 He's Not Excited About the Future

Pay attention if your boyfriend always changes the subject when you bring up plans like concerts, parties and weekends away. If your guy doesn't see a future with you, he probably won't want to talk about it, writes Booth. If he seems to be avoiding conversations about things happening next month or next summer, this shows he's checking out, and not excited about where the relationship is going.

5 He's Not Affectionate

Maybe you've noticed you used to always hold hands on the way to class, but now your boyfriend walks ahead of you or trails behind. Or maybe he always kissed you when he first saw you, and now gives you a half-hearted wave. Lack of affection in public may be your boyfriend's way of subconsciously telling the world he'll soon be available, according to Dobransky. Keep in mind that in every relationship, especially long-term ones, affectionate somewhat dwindles, Booth noted. But if you feel like your guy is keeping his distance physically most of the time, it usually signals a bigger issue.

6 He Changes His Ways on Social Media

You boyfriend may also give clues about his shifting mindset on social media. Pay attention to little details, suggested Booth, like if he changes his relationship status to a private setting so it's unclear if he's with someone or not. Other signs are changing his profile picture from one of the two of you to one of just him, ignoring your comments, or chatting online with other girls. Alone, these things don't usually mean anything, but together, are a definite red flag.

Jaime Budzienski has contributed essays and articles to the "Boston Globe Sunday Magazine," "Pregnancy and Newborn Magazine" and the "Boston Parents Paper." She holds a B.F.A. in writing, literature and publishing from Emerson College and a master's degree in education from UMASS Boston.