Are you living with or dating an emotionally immature man? He might look like a grown-up, but on the inside, he seems to be the same person he was as a budding teen.
Everyone needs time and room to grow, but at some point, you might ask yourself just when that’s actually going to happen.
If you think your partner might be emotionally immature, I’m sure some of his actions might totally drive you mad.
And if you haven’t got it nailed down yet, here’s a list of the 8 biggest things emotionally immature men do that drive women crazy.
1) They fear emotional intimacy and vulnerability.
This was my college boyfriend’s m.o. exactly.
We were together for a year and a half, and I really felt like things were getting serious. But it was impossible to figure out how serious he was with me.
Any time I tried to talk about our relationship and take things to the next level, he always came up with the worst excuses – the kind you might use to get out of turning in a paper late.
You know, like his car broke down or one of his relatives died, and he couldn’t meet me.
And then his grandmother actually died, and I tried to be there for him. He was obviously really broken up by it, but every time I tried to offer support and let him talk about it, he got hugely defensive.
You know the story:
He was fine and didn’t need to cry about it “like a girl.”
He ended up pushing me completely away and eventually out of his life, but you know what?
It was lucky for me – I think I dodged a bullet by getting out of that relationship which wasn’t giving me what I needed anyway.
2) They never admit they’re wrong.
This is something that drives me crazy. I know you’ve experienced a guy like this who just can’t admit to being wrong ever and can never even say sorry.
All you’ll ever get is one of those non-committal “I’m sorry if you feel that way” non-apologies that irk like nothing else.
It’s as though they can’t handle the idea of looking less than someone else and instead flip things around to put the blame on absolutely anyone but themselves.
The truth is clear:
No one is right all the time about everything, and anyone who pretends he is needs to grow up and tune into reality.
3) They’re not accountable for their actions.
This is something similar to not being able to admit wrongdoing, but it also goes a whole lot further.
When a man is not accountable for his actions, he not only blames others when it’s him who has messed up, but he also behaves like the world is out to get him.
He can end up playing the victim, saying things like, “No one wants to hire men right now” as an excuse for not job hunting or “Women are only after your money” to excuse a lack of commitment to a relationship.
This behavior can also include not being accountable for their emotions. As the American Psychological Association explains, the emotionally immature explode in anger or even get drowned by sorrow.
They aren’t good at handling their emotions appropriately to the situation and often place blame on others for making them behave this way.
4) They don’t react well to the word “no.”
Think of how easily tantrums are thrown during a child’s Terrible Twos. When kids can’t get what they want immediately, they get immensely frustrated and react with anger and sadness.
But they grow out of it, right?
But there are some really emotionally immature men out there who don’t seem to have progressed very far from the tantrum stage.
When my ex didn’t get his way, he became a real monster.
And it didn’t have to be about something big like getting sex or borrowing money from his father (though it normally was!).
Even a small thing like not being able to get his normal coffee because the shop was out could set him off.
He really didn’t seem to be able to deal with the fact that there were many things in the world out of his control and, instead, usually lashed out when things didn’t go his way.
5) They don’t take responsibility for maintaining personal and shared spaces.
Emotionally immature men do one thing that really drives women crazy more than just about anything else.
They expect you to clean up after them.
Whether it’s out of a sense of entitlement, apathy, or an ability to progress to a new level of responsibility, being a slob is a sure sign of immaturity.
It’s not that anyone really wants to live in a messy, dirty den. It’s just that immature guys pass the responsibility on to someone, anyone, but themselves.
They’ll eat and just leave their dirty dishes right there as though someone else should clean them up.
They’ll wear every last item of clothing they have if they can avoid doing the laundry.
They’ll let the bathroom get into such a state that you need to wear a biohazard suit just to think about going in.
They may not exactly expect you to clean up, but they force you into it by refusing to do it themselves.
I know more than a few divorces that happened for this simple reason!
6) They can’t handle criticism.
I had a boss like this once.
He was young and good-looking and definitely a go-getter, but he also seemed to believe that the sun shone out of his… office?
And while basically none of his workers really dared to criticize him, upper management had to sometimes.
What that meant was that he’d first get furious, like marching back to his office kicking things. Then he’d call a snap meeting and shout at everyone.
His temper was terrible and made the whole atmosphere at the office really awful while he was there.
Luckily he was headhunted away, and things instantly improved as we got a more experienced and mature manager to take his place.
If you’re in a relationship with a man like this, I can only imagine how much worse it must be.
An emotionally immature man who can’t handle the slightest bit of criticism can never move forward.
Rather than accepting it and trying to use it as motivation to improve himself, he sees any criticism as a threat to his self-esteem and, therefore, completely refuses to let it in.
7) They show off with performative masculinity.
My brother used to be just like this. When he was younger, he really went out of his way to let everyone know just how much of a “big man” he was.
Seriously, he took every opportunity to punch his friends in the shoulder too hard, brag about how many girlfriends he had, and go on and on about wanting to have sex with pretty much every woman he saw.
Except to those who knew the truth, it was all a big act.
He was clearly trying hard to impress others and be macho when he really wasn’t the guy I grew with at all. He used to be shy and sensitive, and I think he was scared of anyone finding out that was really his true nature.
Well, I’m happy to say that it was, luckily, just a phase that he grew out of. By the time he was 21 or so, he had matured and was able to represent himself more realistically.
But I know the same can’t be said for so many emotionally immature men out there.
They cling to so-called masculine activities and behaviors out of fear of being who they truly are. And this fake machismo really drives women crazy.
8) They always need to get the last word in.
I don’t need to get the last word in, but it drives me mad when someone else always has to.
But what’s this behavior all about?
To me, it’s about control. Letting someone else finish a conversation can, for some people, feel like letting them win or letting them have the final say over whatever has been discussed.
For someone who’s emotionally immature, this can feel like a threat.
It’s a clear demonstration of insecurity because someone who is secure in themselves is open to new ideas and can let others have their say.
Someone who isn’t is really missing out on receiving the wisdom of others.
We’ve only looked at 8 things emotionally immature men do that drive women crazy, but even though there are a whole lot more, these are the biggest indications that your guy is immature.
Hopefully, you can help him recognize this and learn to work on his emotional intelligence, but if not, it might be time to reassess the relationship.