Looking for the signs a guy knows he messed up?
Sometimes it’s pretty obvious that he messed up through his actions.
His actions will make it clear that he’s feeling guilty and that he’s here to make amends and change his ways.
However, sometimes the signs can be a little more subtle than that.
Also as women, we occasionally make the mistake of expecting men to know they’ve hurt us without ever fully showing them how we feel.
We expect them to pick up on our indirect (and sometimes passive) communication.
Additionally, even though you may verbalize and discuss the bad things he did with him, he still may not fully connect with your hurt and disappointment.
In these circumstances, there’s a chance he won’t realize that he has hurt or offended you until it's too late.
In this article, we'll explore 8 revealing signs a guy knows he messed up, and how you can approach the relationship moving forward.
Table of Contents
One of the most obvious signs a guy knows he messed up is if he apologizes and takes responsibility for his actions.
What does this look like?
This means you’ll witness him verbally acknowledging the harm he has caused and expressing remorse.
But sometimes it’s just words, right? Sometimes guys just try to say the right thing in order to keep you around (for his own benefit rather than yours).
So you have to really feel his apology to see if he means it and knows he really hurt you. If you feel his apology on top of listening to the words, you’ll know deep down whether he means it or not.
A genuine apology is a clear sign that he recognizes his mistake and is willing to make amends.
If he apologizes to you but you have a good reason to not fully trust his apology, you can test how genuine he is by saying one simple phrase to him.
This one simple phrase will make you look high value whilst revealing how serious he is:
If he’s interacting a lot with your social media, that’s a positive sign. It means he wants to engage with you.
Of course, he could just be trying to get your attention too, and it’s not a reliable sign in and of itself, because it’s not too hard to interact on social media.
But if you see him always being first to watch your stories and liking your posts, it means he not only wants you to be his, but that he still likes you and wants you to forgive him.
True rebound relationships aren’t real relationships. Why?
Because they’re not based on romantic love, instead they’re based on distraction. This distraction provides him with superficial excitement, which isn’t really happiness (and nor is it moving on).
If your guy knows he messed up and is unable to manage his emotions around it, he might jump right to a rebound girl to distract himself from having to deal with the hard stuff.
Deep down he’s far from over what he did though. He’s feeling all kinds of difficult emotions like guilt, regret and embarrassment.
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Similar to the above sign, another of the signs a guy knows he messed up is if he makes an effort to make things right.
This could mean offering to do something special for you, or making a real effort to change the behavior that caused the issue in the first place.
If he is willing to put in the work to fix things, it's a good sign that he knows he messed up.
Is he asking your mutual friends (or even your family) and your emotional, mental or physical health?
If he is, it’s not always a definite sign he regrets hurting you, but it’s a very good sign that he still cares at least.
Of course, he could just be a nosy guy and wants to know what you’re up to, but if he’s asking your friends how you are quite often then you can take it as a sign he feels bad about what he did and hopes that you’re doing ok.
If he shows real remorse and regret, then that’s a sign that he realizes the gravity of his mistake.
If a guy is truly remorseful, this means he will be truly sorry for what he did and he will express that remorse in a sincere way.
Here’s the thing:
People can sometimes be very good at verbalizing remorse, but it doesn’t always mean they’ve actually internalized and felt the remorse.
If he is genuinely remorseful, he will be willing to take responsibility for his actions and will be willing to make amends.
If a guy doesn’t make excuses, this means not only that he knows he messed up, but that he is emotionally committed to you and to the relationship.
If he is willing to own up to his actions, it's a sign that he may be able to be a stable partner for you in the future, despite his mistake.
Would you like to find out exactly how commitment friendly your guy is? You can do that with our quick and easy quiz!
A guy who knows he has messed up will make himself more available for you than he did in the past.
This will last weeks or even many months. But it won’t last forever, as hopefully he will end up regaining your trust and you will need a little less of his reassurance.
If he is making himself more available, try to positively reinforce this behavior from him.
Make him feel like his efforts are being noticed. I know you’re feeling hurt right now, but the worst thing you could do for the future of your relationship is to double down on your reproval.
The more you positively reinforce his empathic behavior, the more he will emotionally connect and attach to you. And the more he emotionally connects and attaches, the less likely he is to hurt you again in the future.
By the way, did you know that there’s a secret emotional trigger within every man on earth that you can activate to inspire his deepest loyalty and devotion to you?
If he’s making an effort to include you in his activities, this is a sign he’s letting you know he’s committed to you and your relationship.
He wants you to know that he’s not hiding anything from you and that there is always a spare spot for you no matter what he’s doing.
Another sign that a guy knows he messed up is if he communicates openly and honestly with you about how he feels and what he’s doing.
This means you’ll see him being transparent and not hiding anything from you.
If he is willing to be open and honest with you, it's a sign that he knows he messed up and wants to make things right.
Another sign that a guy knows he messed up is if he takes action to prevent similar issues in the future.
This could mean:
If he is willing to put in the work to change, it's a sign that he knows he messed up and wants to make things right.
Case study: Learn how Kristin went from being completely burnt out with online dating, sick of getting ghosted and completely exhausted from giving her heart and soul with nothing in return… To having high value men begging for her attention & having the most “electric” date of her entire life. (…All by changing one simple strategy.)
How would you know if he’s taking responsibility for his actions?
You know he’s taking responsibility when you see him caring about how he’s made you feel, and doing whatever it takes to regain your trust and surrender.
No guy truly regrets what he did (through his actions) until he actually meets you where you are at.
In other words, if you’re angry, he doesn’t get defensive about it, he shows you that he understands and that he owns the wrongdoing.
Last in the signs a guy knows he messed up is that he goes off the rails.
This may come after a lot of the other signs, but if he’s tried to get you back and has apologized but you still don’t trust him enough to take him back, then he might go off the rails.
Now he has to process his own guilt, regret and embarrassment as well as deal with his anger over the fact that he cannot get you back.
This may make him feel worthless, sad, upset and hopeless.
Guys who don’t have much of a support network around them tend to be more likely to go off the rails because they don’t know how to properly deal with things.
If he had poor role models growing up, he may also be more likely to go off the rails as a way to cope.
Here are a few signs he’s gone haywire:
It really depends on the individual guy and on the type of woman he was with.
If he was with a good woman then there’s a good chance he will realize he messed up pretty quickly. But what do I mean by a good woman?
A woman who lets him know immediately how hurt, disappointed and angry she is.
Of course it’s not just about the woman though. It’s also about how sensitive and genuine the guy is.
It also depends on whether he is securely attached or not. When a guy is securely attached and emotionally balanced, he will know and accept that he messed up immediately.
Men who tend to be emotionally unavailable may take longer to get out of a state of denial.
They’ll also take longer to fully accept their guilt and take responsibility for their actions.
The first thing to do is to maintain your high value. You do this by not losing it or trying to get some kind of vile revenge on him.
For more on how to be high value, see: 10 Traits Of A High Value, Superior Woman.
Listen to what he has to say and feel whether it is true and authentic in your gut.
Guys say all kinds of things to get a girl back, but it doesn’t have to be true.
So he is only worth taking back when you’re sure that he is emotionally committed to you (and not just trying to keep you around for himself).
In other words, don’t just go back to him because you have no one else (or you’re scared you can’t find anyone else better than him).
He’s still who he is, for the most part. If he’s wasted any amount of your time in the past, you can’t count on him valuing your time in the future.
If you want a family and kids, it’s imperative that you choose a committed guy.
As hard as it is to believe sometimes, know this:
There are plenty of men out there who will commit to you, especially if you show up as a high value woman to men (and avoid the common signs of low value).
By the way, did you know that there Are 7 Common Signs That A Woman is Perceived as Low Value to All Men. Do You Know What They Are & How to Avoid Them Like the Plague?
CLICK here to discover the 7 common signs that a woman is perceived as low value in the eyes of men in this special report. (Why is this important? Because men and women perceive value very differently and you don’t want to be making mistakes that would cause quality men to dismiss, abandon or alienate you.)
Penny is a writer and part time dating coach. She lives in Brisbane, Queensland with the love of her life, their two daughters and their three dogs. Penny is passionate about helping women realize their high value and harness the innate feminine energy that they were born with.
Author & Editor For National Council for Research on Women. Founder of the popular women's dating & relationship advice website, The Feminine Woman.
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