Last Updated on January 13, 2023 by Angela Vaz
She likes you.
You have good chemistry.
You really like how things are progressing.
And then she tells you she wants to take it slow.
Does she mean that she is not interested in dating you?
Weren’t you guys doing great?
You were sure you guys had a good thing going.
So, what’s happening?
In all honesty, I actually said these words to my now boyfriend when we started dating.
And he was just as confused as you were.
We’re finishing our 1st anniversary in 2 weeks – so needless to say; things went well!
As a woman, I can provide more clarity on this statement and possibly help you understand what is going on in her mind when she says this.
In this post, I will explain why she’s said what she’s said and what she expects from you when she says those words – let’s begin!
What does it mean when a girl wants to take it slow?
These are all the possible reasons why a girl wants to take it slow even though she likes you:
1. She’s just come out of a bad relationship
There is a chance that she’s hurting, and isn’t sure what she wants.
She is enjoying getting to know you and just wants to take it slow.
She believes that sleeping together or getting intimate may ruin the possibility of a relationship so she wants to keep dating till she is sure of the next step.
2. She needs time to trust you
The dating game is very different when you’re a man vs. when you’re a woman.
All logistics aside, women don’t find it difficult to find men to date – it’s finding the right person to date.
We’re definitely spoilt for choice because the odds of finding a man are very high for us but the problem comes with choosing.
When I was single and looking for a long-term commitment, I’d lay my cards on the table and say I was looking for a person to spend the rest of my life with. I was not looking for a fling.
Most men told me that that’s what they wanted, but what they really wanted was sex.
They weren’t keen on building a long-term relationship; they just wanted their physical needs met.
There’s nothing wrong with wanting that; it’s just that my needs were different from theirs.
When a woman continuously goes on dates with people who aren’t very honest with their needs and desires, a wall gets built.
She decides she needs to put up more filters to weed out those who want a long-term commitment.
This is another reason she is asking for more time – to build that trust.
3. She values your emotional and mental maturity
She probably wants a refresher if she’s been dating for a long time.
She may be in the stage where she values your company and your emotional and mental maturity.
She wants something more than sex right now, and she’s looking to build an emotional bond with you first.
So, take it as a compliment that she is looking for something more.
4. She wants to make sure that you’re the one
If you both have declared that you are looking for a long-term commitment, then please know that this decision can’t be made in a few dates.
It takes time to get to know a person.
You peel one layer, and so does she.
At this stage, she is just interested in getting to know you.
She wants to see if her interests and yours are compatible; she wants to understand that both of you can gel well together, and she just wants to enjoy your company.
5. She’s made too many mistakes in the past
This was me.
I was a serious bad judge of character when it came to dating men.
I trusted everyone and everything that people told me because I place honesty on a pedestal.
I don’t lie so, I never had reason to believe that others did either.
If someone was nice to me, I took it at face value and believed everything they said.
Once bitten, twice shy.
And after a couple of nasty incidents, I learned that if you judge someone too quickly, you’re in for a long ride.
So, I learned to take things slow and I bet a lot of women do this as well after having made many mistakes before.
6. She’s afraid to get hurt
Believe it or not, a lot of people wear their hearts on their sleeves.
Because they move too quickly, they often fall in love very easily and they give the other person their all, only to realize later that the other person didn’t see them the same way.
After making this mistake more than once, they learn to stop falling hard and take it slowly.
7. You took it too fast
There is a chance that you displayed too much vulnerability or disclosed too much too soon.
Maybe she felt you were getting way too close or attached to her or you both were moving forward way too fast.
There is a possibility that she got scared of the intimacy but at the same time she doesn’t want to lose you, so she suggested taking things slow.
Either way, it’s not a bad thing.
Bottom line: Taking a relationship slowly is a great way to understand each other and not keep a deadline. There are no time limits for dating – you both move at a pace that you are comfortable in.
What should I do when she wants to take things slow?
1. Talk to her
This is what my boyfriend did.
He couldn’t understand what I meant when I said I wanted to take things slow. It had been 2 dates, and things were going great. He was super confused and had no idea where that sentence came from.
So, he asked me about it. And I told him.
I had come out of a very hurtful relationship and I was tired of meeting people that didn’t want a serious relationship. I wanted to be sure that my future partner really did have the same needs as me.
He understood and he was more than willing to go slow.
Please understand that dating means data collection.
Nothing is set in stone.
At this point, you are getting to know each other – so communication is the best way to go about things when you don’t know or understand something.
Just talk to her – be honest and ask her for more clarification because you don’t understand what she means or why she said what she said.
This is also an excellent way to see how well she communicates and is patient.
Ask her to be honest with you and explain things to you when you don’t understand something. Ask her to tell you if you ever make her uncomfortable or if she needs space.
And you do the same. This is how you build mutual respect for each other’s boundaries.
2. Protect your interests
In some cases, girls often like the attention and just want to talk to you because they’re seeing someone else seriously.
Perhaps they enjoy the banter they have with you and that’s all it will ever be.
So, this requires due diligence on your part. You will need to talk to her some more and build trust.
Trust is a two-way street and that isn’t built in a day.
So take your time and protect yourself too.
3. Explore her mind
This is a great opportunity to learn about her and get to know her as a person.
Explore her mind and find out who she really is.
Get to know her:
- Values and beliefs
- Mantras or what keeps her going
- Goals and ambitions
- Past and how it’s affected her
- Greatest lessons
- Passions and interests
There are so many things you can learn from a person in order to know whether they are compatible with you.
Taking time to understand who she is as a person will also help you decide if she is the right person for you.
At the end of the day, you are trying to find someone you can spend a huge portion of your life with.
If at all you are dating casually or for other reasons, be honest with her and find someone else who has the same needs as you.
4. Give it time
Real love doesn’t happen like in the movies – it’s not a one-second fleeting moment of passion that results in a lifetime of love.
Movies and books have honestly ruined our perception of love because it has to led to extremely unrealistic expectations of love and dating.
Love takes time to build.
It takes time to find out who you are talking to and then build a life with them.
These things should never be rushed.
Just like how people spend a huge portion of their lives figuring out what career is the right one for them, similarly, they should do the same when trying to find a life-partner.
5. Let your creativity run loose
There are so many wonderful things you can talk about and have fun.
This is a lovely opportunity to do so many beautiful things together and get to know her in a way that most people never explore.
You can go on dinner dates to fun and new food-joints. You can have mini-treks together and try out new activities.
The opportunities are endless!
6. Build a strong friendship
There are so many reasons why she wants to take it slow as I mentioned before.
So don’t let it bring you down.
Instead, build a friendship. Use this as a fabulous opportunity to build a friendship with this woman.
If at all you are looking to build a long-term commitment, then you’re going to want to build a relationship that’s strong and beautiful.
Having an intimate partner who is also your friend and confidante is honestly such a blessing.
This is the foundation of a great relationship and too many times people focus on building a physical relationship before an emotional one which really doesn’t go the distance.
7. Don’t let it go on for too long
If after a couple of dates and a lot of conversation, you feel like you’re not moving forward or you don’t know what’s happening, then have a serious conversation with her.
Talk to her and ask her where this is going.
Usually, after a couple of dates, a woman who is genuinely interested in moving forward with you, will become more free and close to you. You’ll notice subtly signs like:
- She’ll be able to reveal a lot of personal information about herself
- She’ll make a lot of eye contact with you
- She will hold your hand or arm when talking to you or walking with you
- She will be freer with her hugs
If you aren’t catching this vibe from her even after a few dates and you feel she’s keeping you at arm’s length, it is time to understand why.
Talk to her and express your concerns.
Just listen. And see if the relationship is worth pursuing.
Some women (very rare) do have emotional trauma that they’re recovering from and they’re not ready to become physical with anyone.
At this point, you will have to decide whether you want to pursue this relationship, but you require all the information beforehand.
That’s why it’s important to study and get to know her.
Do girls like it when guys take things slow?
It really, really depends on the girl you are dating.
I love it when guys take things slow because I value relationships and long-term commitment. I understand that a relationship cannot be built in a day or a week.
It takes time to form an emotional bond with a person.
But I do have a lot of friends who aren’t like that. They prefer guys moving fast.
So, in order to find out if a girl likes it or not, just talk to her.
Be honest and open and ask her what exactly she is looking for from the relationship.
We’re all adults and there should be no shame in being honest about your needs.
I hope this post helped you understand what to do if she likes you but wants to take it slow.
Here are more posts that you might find helpful:
- How to respond to “I’m not ready for a relationship”?
- Wife cheated on me but wants to reconcile
- What I did to get over my cheating ex
- How to stop overthinking after being cheated on
- My girlfriend left me for someone else, what do I do?
- How to recover from the aftermath of a toxic relationship
- I’m missing my ex so badly, it hurts. What do I do?
- How to recover from a painful breakup
- What do I do when I can’t handle this emotional pain?
- How to love yourself as a single person
- The single girl’s bucket list: 35 exciting things you should do
- 7 breakup books that helped me get over my heartbreak
- 13 signs you’re healing from a painful breakup
- Is it time to end the relationship? 17 signs enough is enough
- Struggling with singleness? Read this