Why Do Guys Act Like They Don’t Care After A Breakup?

If he was so loving and caring while you were together, why is he acting like a jerk now? Was he just pretending?

Guys act like they don’t care after a breakup because acting unaffected is their coping mechanism against the pain of separation. They build an ice barrier around them to prevent you from seeing them as weak, vulnerable, and broken. It also helps in hiding their misery and look strong and cool.

But if the guy was a jerk while he was with you, it is highly likely that he’s really unaffected.

Reasons Why He Is Acting Cold After Your Breakup

1. He Is Heartbroken

One of the obvious reasons he is acting cold towards you would be that he is heartbroken.

He is so hurt right now that even looking at you would break his heart into a thousand pieces.

Not only his hopes of a future with you were shattered, but he might also be feeling useless and rejected.

TABLE: Ways Men Behave Coldly After A Breakup

Cold BehaviorPercentage
Physical ghosting63%
No contact78%
Blocking number/socials47%
Rebound relationships29%
Seeing multiple women21%
Source: Based on a survey by RebootLoveLife.com with 187 men between the ages of 18-55 years who have had at least one breakup in life.
Note: Percentage does not add up to 100 due to overlapping behaviors.
He Is Heartbroken

2. He Is Having Trouble Moving On

He is acting cold and distant because he is trying very hard to get over you.

Staying connected to you would make it difficult for him to move on, so he is avoiding contact with you. He is erasing all your memories from his system.

Think of his ghosting you as a detox.

3. He Is Bad At Expressing Emotions

Guys have trouble dealing with their emotions and are less expressive than women in general.

He seems cold because he doesn’t know how to respond after the breakup.

He is running away from you so that he won’t end up doing anything stupid that he might regret later.

Guys don’t easily let people into their personal space, and now that you are out of his life, he will keep you at bay as well.

He will take his own sweet time to deal with his emotions and act accordingly.

4. He Is Still Trying To Accept The Truth

This breakup has been really hard on him, and he hasn’t been able to accept that you two are no longer together.

Talking to you or seeing you will remind him of the time spent together, and he may feel miserable afterward.

To avoid the pain, he has shut the doors to his heart for you.

5. He Is Mad At You

He is angry with you for breaking up. If you dumped him and he never saw it coming, perhaps, he hates you now.

For him, the relationship was perfect until you ruined it with your actions, or continuously disappointed him in the relationship.

From his point of view, you are the culprit and the reason behind his misery.

He Is Mad At You

6. He Regrets Not Doing Enough

Maybe he is in a terrible condition after you left. He is cursing himself for not being able to keep you happy.

He regrets his actions, and all this guilt is making it difficult for him to face you. Most guys would beg and plead in front of you to give them another chance.

But there are a few who implode with guilt and thus act like they don’t care by severing all ties.

7. He Is Hiding His Feelings From You

He is acting unbothered because he doesn’t want to be seen as vulnerable around you anymore.

Hiding his pain and feelings from you at least makes him appear strong in his own eyes.

He is trying to act cool in front of you by not showing any concern.

In a nutshell, he wants you to think that the breakup didn’t hurt him at all, and he couldn’t care less.

8. He Doesn’t Want To Get Back Together

He is ignoring you because he doesn’t want to get back together with you.

There are trust issues and he is not feeling the same way about you like before.

So he is trying to avoid even the slightest possibility of the two of you connecting again. He cannot take another heartbreak from the same person.

9. He Is Seeing Other People

If he is seeing other people or dating someone out there, that could explain his cold behavior towards you.

He doesn’t want to give you any false ideas by being warm towards you and acknowledging you.

He is just avoiding you to not mess it up with the other person he is dating.

He Is Seeing Other People

10. He Is Happy About The Breakup

This is like a wish come true for him. He always wanted the breakup to happen, and he was way over you even before you realized it.

Now he is enjoying his single life and does not want to attach himself to you again.

11. He Wants You To Regret Leaving Him

He is behaving coldly because he wants you to regret the breakup and dumping him if you were the one who left.

Thus, he is giving you time and space to rethink your relationship with him. Technically, he wants you to feel bad and come back begging.

12. He Doesn’t Want To Play Games Anymore

If it’s not the first time you two have broken up, maybe he is tired of all this drama.

He is tired of running in circles, and this time he finally wants to end the relationship for good.

By behaving coldly, he is ensuring that you do not try to contact him again.

He is counting on your ego to kick in and make you realize that he is a jerk, and thus you should cut off all contact with him forever.

13. He Has No Control Over His Emotions

He is afraid that he might lose control over himself by seeing you and may even try to beg you to get back together.

Somehow he realizes that you two are not meant to be together, so he keeps himself away from you.

But this logical reasoning will be overpowered and give way to his emotions when you appear before him.

14. This Is His Usual Way Of Treating His Exes

Everyone has their own unique way of dealing with breakups and their exes. This is his way of coping with the post-breakup trauma.

He prefers to treat them coldly and may even ghost them forever.

This way, he gets to stay unaffected by whatever the hell is happening in his ex-partner’s life.

This Is His Usual Way Of Treating His Exes

15. He Doesn’t Believe In Exes Being Friends

He doesn’t believe in the idea of staying friends post-breakup.

Perhaps, he feels that all the grudges would resurface sooner or later and thus further degrade your equation with him.

So he wants to let things be and leave things on as good a note as possible. Further, he may even dread the thought of seeing you with someone else.

He would rather be cold and distant than put on a fake smile and try to be your friend, especially when he sees you date someone else.

16. He Is Still In Love With You

He is behaving coldly because he doesn’t want you to know that he is still in love with you.

His feelings for you should not be the only reason to hold you back from moving on.

He doesn’t want you to feel pity for him and patch up out of sympathy.

17. He Wants You To Feel His Absence

He is acting distant because he wants you to realize what you are missing without him in your life.

So he is giving you the space to miss him.

He believes that this way you’ll end up reminiscing about the good things he did for you and the good times while you two were together.

18. Actually Doesn’t Care Anymore

He is behaving like this because he actually doesn’t care about you.

He is so busy in his own life that he doesn’t think about you or the breakup.

Perhaps he is intentionally keeping himself busy to avoid thinking about you.

How Do You Tell If A Guy Is Hurt After A Breakup?

To tell if a guy is hurt after a breakup, compare his behavior to how you usually know him. If he’s always been a jerk and still acting like one, he probably isn’t hurt. But if his actions seem unlike his usual demeanor, he is definitely hurt, even if he’s trying to hide it.

Here are a few more signs to look out for:

1. He Is Avoiding Contact With You

Usually, when a guy is not affected by the breakup, he would have no problem being around you or talking to you.

But a guy who is hurt by the split will try to stay away from you as much as possible. He doesn’t want you to see him in a vulnerable situation.

Moreover, he knows that seeing you will bring back all the pain he had gone through to get over you, and he will have to start all over again.

He won’t be able to keep himself and his emotions together. So he will avoid all kinds of contact until he pulls himself together.

He Is Avoiding Contact With You

2. He Has Blocked You Everywhere

If he has blocked your phone number and your socials or ceased any form of communication with you, then it means the breakup badly hurts him.

He is trying hard to move on and doesn’t want to see anything that reminds him of you.

He can’t go through the pain of knowing that you two are no longer together.

So, he is removing every possibility of coming across anything that even remotely reminds him of you.

3. His Life Is A Mess

After you, his life has become miserable. He is not taking care of himself and has stopped eating and talking.

Further, he has isolated himself and is trying to cut his connection with the outer world. He is not focusing on his life and thinking straight.

He is close to going into depression.

Lastly, his friends and family have talked to him about his downward spiral, tried to reach out to you, and showed great concern.

4. He Is Angry With You

Another sign that he is hurt after you got separated is that he is angry at you. He hasn’t been able to forgive you.

It doesn’t matter whose fault it was, but the very fact that you two are no longer together is hurting him.

He is hurt because things didn’t turn out the way he expected or wanted them to be.

If you accidentally come across him, he gives you the cold shoulder and ignores you like there was never a connection.

5. He Is Intoxicating Himself

Some guys can’t handle the emotional pain of a breakup, and they try to avoid it by drawing themselves into alcohol or drugs.

He is not confronting his emotions and escaping from them.

He has been partying more often than before, perhaps to create the illusion about how happy he is.

His social media confirms that he is trying to show you how cool he is and that the end of this relationship has only made his life better.

If you’ve been getting many drunk calls or texts from him, especially abusive ones, then know that he is not handling this breakup sanely.

6. He Is Not Going Out With Anyone

If he has not started dating yet, he is probably not over you and still hurt about the breakup.

He is taking time to deal with his feelings.

He is not ready to replace you with someone else. Maybe he is still hoping to get back together with you.

He Is Not Going Out With Anyone

7. He Cried Before You

Another sign that he is heartbroken after the breakup is that he has called or tried to reach out to you several times, begging to get back together with him.

He has also cried in front of you so that you could see that he is suffering and put an end to it by patching things up.

Maybe now he might be acting cold and strong, but he isn’t taking the breakup kindly if he broke down earlier.

8. Revenge Is On His Mind

When you are the one who is causing him immense pain, then he may try to exact revenge or hurt you to make you go through the same pain or something even worse than that.

He is hurt, which is why he has tried to or might try to grieve you emotionally or physically by doing something unforgivable.

Try everything in your capacity to safeguard yourself if the guy has a history of violent and emotionally manipulative behavior.

9. Trash Talking About You

When people are hurt, they are more prone to act stupidly because they are not in the right frame of mind.

For example, your ex-boyfriend is acting stupidly by trash-talking about you behind your back or abusing you over calls.

This is because he doesn’t know how to get your attention or react to the breakup.

The pain he is in is causing him to act immaturely and has overpowered his senses.

10. Acting Like He Doesn’t Care

He is acting as if the breakup did not affect him, and he is cool with it.

He is trying to avoid talking about the breakup and pretending that he is way over you.

This is a classic technique to create the illusion that you are the needy one while he is the one who’s in complete control.

In reality, if he wasn’t that strong emotionally to be utterly unaffected by emotional trauma, chances are things won’t have changed overnight.

11. He Is Going Out With Multiple Women

After a breakup, a guy either does not date anyone or goes out with every other girl.

He is doing so because he is hurt and has lost faith in love and the idea of being loyal to one person.

He feels that he should do whatever he feels like and not give a damn about other people’s emotions as he only got hurt by doing so.

He Is Going Out With Multiple Women

12. Posting Sad Posts On Social Media

He is putting sad quotes or pictures on social media to show you that he is hurt.

By doing so, he is trying to make you feel bad and come back to him.

Also, some people find a sense of comfort in the sympathy showered on the internet.

He might like when people give him some attention so that he can pour his heart out to known ones, random strangers, or anybody who cares.

How Long After A Breakup Do Guys Regret It?

Guys start regretting around 7-10 days after a breakup. It might happen earlier whenever the void of your absence hits him. However, the feeling of regret is dependent on the intensity of his emotions. If he was never attached to you, the breakup is an opportunity for him to bring another girl.

Regret is a feeling that doesn’t hit someone right away. It takes time to realize, analyze, and accept what has happened.

Guys who are bad at confronting their own emotions may take longer than those who know how to acknowledge their feelings and resolve them.

Normally girls are emotional creatures, and they feel the pain of splitting up from a loved one right away.

However, guys, on the other hand, tend to run away from the realization.

They try to act cold and strong because they want to show that they are not weak emotionally.

Coming across as weak results in their friends and acquaintances shunning them as a wuss.

Initially, guys get carried away with the newfound freedom after a breakup.

Then, they will start doing all the things they couldn’t do while they were committed to you just to show that you were detrimental to their growth.

Later, most guys go crazy with grief like any normal person would.

Only after a while, when they have nothing left to do, they realize how they have been chasing something shallow.

And then only after experiencing many disappointments and neglect from others will they come to realize how great and meaningful a relationship they had with you.


If he really loved you, no matter how hard he tries to control his emotions or hide them from you, there will come a time when his ice-cold demeanor will give way to his real self.

He will come to you expressing his feelings or seeking a confrontation or closure. You just need to be patient in your ways and keep your calm.

Do not go after him seeking his attention as it will only complicate things further and might even boost his ego.

Now tell us, why do you think your ex is behaving the way he is? Comment below!

Shashank Verma

A trained theatre actor and a STEM graduate who brings perspectives and methods from these worlds into dating and relationships. Also a big time Krav Maga enthusiast and practitioner.

Recent Posts