15 Clear Signs He Is Pretending Not To Like You

Not sure if this guy likes you? Your friends may have told you your guy friend likes you, but you don’t see it. Or you might not want to make the first move out of fear of rejection.

How can you tell if a guy likes you but is trying not to? Why would a guy even pretend not to like you? These are questions that a lot of women find themselves asking.

Men can be hard to understand at times. Men differ from women, although we are all human. That difference can cause a lot of confusion in the minds of each gender.

Look at some clear signs he is pretending not to like you.

How Do You Tell If a Guy is Pretending Not To Like You?


Are you getting a tugging feeling that a guy likes you, but he has been giving you mixed signals? So now, you have no idea what is going on.

How would you know a guy likes you when he pretends not to? How do you know if he is faking or disliking you that way?

Some guys would ask you out and tell you how they feel towards you. Yet, others are not into this approach. Sometimes, their behaviors can get confusing and mysterious.

To help you get more clarity, here are fifteen signs that he likes you but pretends not to.

15 Signs He is Pretending Not To Like You


#1 You are getting mixed signals from him

He sends you signals where you are unsure if he likes you. Today, he would act all in love with you but pretend that nothing happened the next day.

For example, you may be down, and he is there for support. The next day, he is casual and shrugs off any meaning to the day before. He may use the excuse that you needed someone instead of expressing his true feelings.

When a guy is trying to hide his feelings, he could be nice to you some days and other days the complete opposite. Deep down on the inside, it could be that he doesn’t know what he wants with you. His heart and his brain are not in sync. When a guy gives off mixed signals, women usually interpret it wrong.

Mixed signals can mean he’s not interested and stringing you along. It also can signify that he is trying to hold back his feelings for you. He is afraid of showing too much interest in you, only for you to reject him.

He would give you the hot and cold treatment. For example, he might start by texting you all day. Then, without any warning, he ignores you completely. This behavior will make you wonder if he likes you or you’re overthinking.

It could very well be that he like you a lot but feels unsure of what he wants. The feelings he has for you scare him. He thinks it will be tough if things won’t work out between you both, so he’s playing it super safe.

#2 His friends call you his girl.

It’s easy to know if a guy’s interested based on how his friends relate to you. Have you overheard his friends calling you his girl? Do they reference you and him as being together or in love? It is most likely because he has been talking to them about you.

If you ask him what his friends are saying, he denies it. Or he might pretend that his friends are playing and what they say doesn’t matter. Shrugging it off as if they are trying to embarrass him.

This is one of the most obvious signs that he likes you. That is because, usually, friends only say what they know or have been told. So what his friends may hint to you could be a free ticket to his mind.

Another way his male friends can show that he likes you is if they keep boundaries. Do his friends hit on you when you hang out with him? No? That’s a clear sign that he’s into you. His friends respect boundaries.

Note that this is not the case with everyone, as some guys’ friends don’t care about the bro code and would hit on the girl he likes. Yet if you notice that his friends are not flirting with you, it is most likely because they know he likes you.

He may have already expressed his interest in you to his friends. Creating this awareness is also a way for him to keep his friends from making a move on you.

#3 He teases you

He makes fun of you, not to hurt you, but in a joking, playful way. The jokes he makes about you leave you feeling embarrassed. Yet you find yourself laughing, too. For him to even do this to you is a sign that he feels comfortable enough with you. He may call you funny names like ugly or goofy when he thinks you are the prettiest girl in his eyes.

How do you know the difference between a guy who teases you because they like you and one who teases you because they don’t? It all depends on how they make fun of you and their reaction after responding to their teasing. It also depends on the tone in which you are being teased. 

If a guy is teasing and you get even a little bit upset, he would laugh in a way that you would know he is playing. For example, he makes a joke about the lettuce on your teeth. After you give him a look, he gives you the side eye and starts laughing.

A little teasing is one of the most obvious signs that a guy likes you. Many guys do this to girls they pretend not to like. It confuses the girls and makes them less of a simp by giving them balance. Especially if you usually get compliments from them.

“Simp” is a slang term used among guys to degrade manhood. “Simp” means being soft by caring. So, a simp will show much interest in someone they like or are with. Guys usually don’t want to show that side of themselves. Often, it’s because of the fear of their friends ridiculing them.

#4 He is protective of you.

You notice that he is very concerned about the male figures in your life. Who you date or hang out with tends to interest him.

If you are with someone, he wants to know that you are being treated right. If he pretends not to like you, he may not point out his concerns or opinions. But he might ask questions or bring it up as a joke. It all depends on his personality.

#5 Cares about the friendship

He puts effort into the friendship. Talks to you often and remembers the little things. He may not tell you that he wants to go everywhere with you but would invite you to outings where he needs a plus one.

He degrades the real reason he chose to ask you out of all his female friends. When the only reason he is going is to spend time with you. 

#6 He resents boyfriends and dates

He acts like he is not hurt when you mention other guys or your dating life. Depending on his personality, the reactions may differ. If he is an outgoing comedic person, he might laugh it off and make noisy comments in the form of jokes. This way, it would not sound like he is inquiring because he is jealous or upset.

You may notice that he is uncomfortable with guys talking to you. He may even dislike you talking about your love life with other guys. Women rant to their friends about these things.

Because you consider him a friend, you may tell him about something that happened to get a male’s opinion on it. For some guys, this is where their pretending cover gets discovered. 

#7 He’s there when you need him.

Although he may act like he doesn’t like you, he is always there when you need him. He is the first to drop everything to help you in a challenging situation.

Whether you’re stranded on the side of the road, and you need a ride, or you need a tire change, he is there to help. This is one of the signs that he is into you. Even though he tries to pretend by acting a little hesitant, he still comes through for you.

He advises you when you tell him about things in your life. Although he may not know how to help, he finds a way to.

#8 He is always nearby

As creepy as this may sound, this is a possible sign that he likes you if this guy is always in your vicinity, whether at school or work, he is into you.

If he seems to always be near you and tries to find ways to see you, he is most likely into you. You’ll see this sign depicted in a lot of movies. It often shows the person as a crazy stalker, but that may not be true.

He likes being around you but is afraid to ask you out. Still, you should be careful if he is everywhere you go, especially if you don’t know him too well.

Either way, whether he is crazy or not, this is a sign that he likes you and is pretending not to. He may have found out where you are or where you will be from social media. He is also usually the first to watch your social media stories and like your posts.

#9 He Knows everything about you

He shows interest in getting to know you by asking you questions about yourself. Why? Because he wants to learn more about you. Even more of a telling sign, he observes things about you. He may even know more about you than you even know about yourself.

For your birthday, his gifts are always meaningful and never last minute. Don’t get me wrong, it doesn’t have to be expensive. It can be something that he knows you would love or need and appreciate.

He might buy you an art set because he knows you like painting or even get you a basket of your favorite foods and candy.

He might shrug off his thoughtfulness by saying you mentioned you liked this in the past. Or he might say you might like it when he knows you well.

Talking to you about your life is more interesting for him than talking to you about his. Being self-centered isn’t in his mind when it comes to you. He may keep the conversation about you. That way, he doesn’t say something that may make you think he is into you.

So, has he ever surprised you by recalling details about your not-so-obvious habits? Or does he remember something you mentioned sometime back? Then he likes you enough to care. It could have been something important.

Or it may have been something you said at that moment. If he has done this, he is paying attention to you. He listens to you when you talk, showing that he cares about you. If someone has no interest in you, they will not waste time getting to know you.

#10 His body language

His words don’t match up with his body language. He may have said that he doesn’t like you, but his actions and body language tell different stories. A person’s body language can be very telling in almost all circumstances. It shows if a person is happy, sad, and many other emotions.

Body language is a significant indicator of what a person feels. When he is around, you observe his demeanor. Is he happy to see you? How does he look at you?

These little things could be an indicator that he has feelings for you. If he is into you, his body language signs will be positive. You may have noticed that eye contact between you is sometimes prolonged.

Positive body language is a big sign that they like you. Although he may try to pretend, there is no playacting with body language – it can be a dead giveaway.

#11 He tries to make you laugh

When he is goofy with you, he does and says stuff to make you laugh. He wants to see you smiling and being happy. It’s even more of a sign if he jokes about the idea of you two together.

He won’t joke about this if he has no interest in you. Unless he is an unfeeling bastard, he won’t try to create false hope. Ever heard of the saying, “Every joke has a meaning behind it?” His comments may mean that he thinks about the idea of you and him together.

#12 He tests you or makes snide remarks

“This girl on Instagram messaged me, and we hit it off. Did I mention that she is so cute?” He makes slick comments to draw your emotions.

He wants to know how you feel about him. So he may mention a girl he is seeing or talking to because he wants to know if you would get mad at the idea of him with someone.

He believes he would know how you feel about him based on your reaction. He might be planning on telling you his feelings for you but wants to ensure they are mutual first.

#13 He shows off

He makes it his duty for you to notice him in some way. He tries to look and smell good when he is around you. Bragging about his accomplishments to try and impress you is also a sign. Guys can be cunning, and sometimes, it’s hard to notice when he’s showing off because of how casually he does it.

If he makes an effort to look good around you is a sign that he is trying to impress you. If a guy doesn’t care about his physical appearance or hygiene when he is around you is not a good sign.

He doesn’t care about impressing you or making you like him. It is most likely because he doesn’t like you in that way.

Also, does he tell you about what he wants to do in life or talk to you about what he wants to be in the future? Even if he only tells you his college plans, it could be a way of trying to impress you. Women like men with ambition, and men know this.

#14 He acts unbothered or weird

When others mention your name, he pretends to ignore the conversation. He is trying to take in all the information he can. He doesn’t want people to suspect that he likes you.

He tries not to show his feelings for you, which might make him appear weird around you. For instance, he might feel awkward about hugging you.

He doesn’t want any physical contact with you because he likes you. Regardless of how small, physical contact may arouse his sexual feelings for you. 

He may avoid answering the question if you ask him if he is into you. He might change the subject or call you weird for asking that. He tries to avoid situations with you that would give you a glimpse of his feelings, particularly if he loves you and doesn’t want to handle rejection.

#15 He makes time for you

One of the most obvious ways to know if someone likes you is the amount of time with you. The best thing you can invest in others is time.

If your guy makes time to hang out with you, it is most likely because he likes you and being around you. Your company makes him happy, so he makes time for you. It could be that he has a busy week and yet found the time to go bowling with you or talk to you over the phone.

No matter how pretentious a guy tries to be, he will likely slip up if he loves you. Yet, women usually want affirmation. We do not want to guess, especially when it involves mixed signals.

However, men have reasons for doing this, and some are pretty valid. Let’s look at some of them.

Why Would a Guy Pretend Not To Like You?

Why would a guy pretend not to like you when he could tell you? He shows all the above signs, but why doesn’t he tell me how he feels.

Men are not as expressive as women. Their parents socialize them to be tough and to hide their emotions. So it may be hard for men to express interest in you.

Many women have issues with their boyfriends’ lack of feeling in relationships. Men usually do this to portray themselves as macho.

8 Reasons Why a Guy Pretends Not To Like You


#1 You are not interested in him.

It could be because of the way you act with him. Or it might be something you may have said to him in the past, indicating that you are not interested in him.

Although he has feelings for you, he may hide it because you do not feel the same way. Your guy doesn’t want to upset you, so he won’t tell you he likes you, especially if he has a great friendship.

#2 Doesn’t want to ruin the friendship

You and this guy have a great friend relationship, and he doesn’t want to ruin that over a potential breakup. So he doesn’t want you to get into a relationship with him. Despite his love for you, he hides it because of this. 

Many breakups don’t end well. They can result in a lack of communication or friendship because of hurt feelings. Your guy doesn’t want to lose you as a friend, especially if he thinks the relationship won’t last.

This feeling didn’t come from nowhere. It’s based on conversations and disagreements you two may have had. He feels this way because of what you’ve told him about relationship stuff he feels this way.

#3 Ex-boyfriend

He dated you before, and things didn’t work out, but he still loves you. You may have broken it off with him, but you are still friends.

As crazy as it may seem, this happens way too often. You and your ex may have broken up, but it doesn’t mean the feelings are gone. People in relationships choose to end it for various reasons; sometimes the result isn’t as messy.

Many people keep in contact with their ex-boyfriends. It may be because he has a child with you. Or you may still consider each other as friends even if the relationship didn’t work out.

#4 He is in a relationship.

It could be that he is in a relationship but likes you. “Then why is he in a relationship with that girl? Why doesn’t he leave her for me?” I am sure this is the common thought in your head.

Well, people get into relationships for all types of reasons. Love is not always the main factor. It could be that he has a child with the girl he is with or many other factors. Still, you should not settle for less.

#5 He is shy

He could be a shy person. Thus, expressing his feelings for you might be a bold step that his personality doesn’t agree with. The thought of telling you that he likes you makes him nervous.

It’s even worse if he is unsure of your feelings towards him.

#6 Had a rough past breakup

A person’s past can affect their future. He may like you but isn’t ready to get into a relationship because of his past breakup trauma.

It is not mainly because he is afraid you would break up with him or break his heart. It’s because he went through it in the past. So he is not ready to get back into a relationship with anyone because of this.

Although he has feelings for you, he keeps them hidden because of the past hurt or trauma.

#7 Doesn’t want to commit

Yes, it can happen. Your guy could like you a lot and doesn’t want to enter a relationship because of his commitment issues. He wants to be free and have all a single man’s liberties.

So he pretends not to like you because, in reality, he wouldn’t want you to see his true colors if he gets together with you.

He may have had trouble with committing in the past or still does. Because he likes you, he doesn’t want you to go through that with him.

#8 You are in a relationship.

He likes you very much, but you are with someone already. So he pretends not to like you in fear of your boyfriend beating him up or many other reasons.

It could also be because he is reluctant to overstep his boundaries out of respect for you and your partner. Men like these are rare. Many guys with feelings for you do not care about the man you are with. They only care about the love felt for you.

Also, if the guy you are with is his friend, this could be a reason. Even if you and his friend are not together, but he knows that his friend likes you, he might back off.