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22 Regretful Signs A Guy Knows He Messed Up

22 Regretful Signs A Guy Knows He Messed Up

Updated on Aug 29, 2023

Reviewed by Katina Tarver, MA (Mental Health and Wellness Counseling) , Life & Relationship Coach

22 Regretful Signs A Guy Knows He Messed Up

If he has unforgivably hurt you and wants you back, you MUST look for signs a guy knows he messed up. Make sure that he actually learned his lesson. Otherwise, history will repeat itself. 

On the other hand, even if he has moved on, you might still have some grudges. You want him to understand you and repent. 

So, whatever your situation, let’s unravel the truth here!

Signs a guy knows he messed up – 22 Signs

He took you for granted throughout the relationship and gaslit you when you felt hurt or neglected. Once you push him away and peak on your own, he returns to have you back… or tries to catch your attention with zero repentance!

Before you decide anything, make sure he’s aware of his actions with these signs!

1. He chooses to stay single

After a breakup, he can easily move on to someone else. But if a guy chooses to stay single even after breaking up, he probably knows he messed up. 

He wants to keep the option of reconciliation open. He might hope that you will forgive him one day. He has now realized your worth, even if he took you for granted. 

2. He accepts his flaws

The first step to recovery is always acceptance. So, if someone wants to improve themselves, they must accept their flaws first. 

He knows he has messed up if he acknowledges his flaws. This is a good sign if he is getting over his pride and seeing things for what they are. 

However, this does not necessarily mean that he will change. But you can always look at the bright side. He has self-reflected, especially if he wants to talk to you about his imperfections.

3. He acts like nothing has happened

This one is pretty much the opposite of the last one, but there’s more to it!

People often find it difficult to accept their mistakes because of their egos. This denial happens even when they hurt someone they love.  

So, if his ego stops him from admitting his fault, he knows he messed up. He wants you back in his life, but he does not want to face humiliation because he screwed up. This way, he wants you and himself to forget that something ever happened.

4. He feels guilty and is ashamed of himself

If he always speaks to you sheepishly and avoids looking into your eyes, he is ashamed of himself for his actions. 

The guy knows that he has messed up big time. He might start justifying his actions or try to overcompensate.

5. He sincerely apologizes

If he was saying sorry just for the sake of it, he would not have bothered saying it more than once. 

But if he apologizes frequently, he wants to get you back at all costs and is willing to go down on his knees. If he is sincere about his apologies, giving him a second chance might be safe.

6. He starts seeing a therapist

Not only a therapist helps you feel better but also guides you to become a better version of yourself. 

So, if a guy starts seeing a therapist, he is willing to work on himself. He knows he needs to get to the root of his issues if he wants to fix them. He might even do it because he wants to prove that he is willing to make an effort.

7. He’s contacting you at all times

So, he never found the time to reply to you but is suddenly flooding your inbox. He’s finding excuses to contact you time after time. Or, he may drop by your house out of the blue. 

If yes, he definitely knows he has messed up BIG TIME. 

He feels that things will get better just by keeping in touch. Hearing from him so frequently can be confusing, especially if you are trying to move on. 

8. He is sending you long emails and messages

We rarely send long messages to people if we have nothing substantial to say. So, an unmistakable sign that a guy knows he messed up is when he sends you long texts. This is a desperate attempt to get you back. 

Before making any decisions, you need to analyze the messages’ contents. Is he acknowledging his mistakes, or is he just making excuses? 

9. He makes some big life changes

People rarely make any major life changes if they believe in themselves. But if a man tries to prove to you that he can change for the better, he is probably aware that he has messed up. 

So, if he is on a journey to self-improvement, he knows that the breakup happened because of his actions. 

Therefore, he is doing everything that is possible in order to make you believe that he deserves another chance. 

10. He is always asking your loved ones about you

Is the man in question still in touch with your friends and family? Does he keep on asking them about you? 

He’ll avoid facing you if he knows that he has messed up. But he’ll approach your loved ones since he can’t directly know about your whereabouts. 

Though frustrating, it means that he still cares a lot about you. The best way to judge him is to listen to your loved ones’ perceptions about him.

11. He is showering you with gifts

Another sign is when he frequently gives you random presents. He may surprise you with your favorite chocolate bar just because he saw it on the market. He’s regretful for messing up and is obviously trying to overcompensate by buying you gifts. 

He might say that it is normal for friends to buy each other stuff. But don’t fall for his words. It is just one of his attempts to win you back.

12. He’s hiding his new relationship from you

If you guys are in touch, notice if he sidesteps every conversation about his love life. He might try so you don’t find out about his new partner. 

This also shows that he knows he messed up. 

How so?

Well, he’s trying to keep his options open. He knows that if you find out about his new relationship, you’ll want to let things go for good. 

He wants you to forgive his mistakes and give him another chance, and therefore he is pretending to be single. 

This is sick, but the hard truth is always hard to swallow!

13. He has gone missing out of shame

It is guaranteed that a guy knows he has messed up if he has suddenly disappeared. He does not know how to face you, the consequences of his actions, or how to apologize.

Disappearing for a few days is his way of coping with the situation. He’s either avoiding the problem, or he’s spending some time alone to introspect. 

14. He expresses that you deserve someone better

If he always tells you that you deserve more than he can offer, he knows that he has ruined everything for good. 

He has realized that nobody deserves to be treated the way he treated you. He has lost all hope of you forgiving him. 

However, this might also be his way of manipulating you into giving him another chance. So, figure out his intentions before you move forward. 

15. You have been avoiding him

A man can’t deny that he has messed up if you keep your distance from him. If you avoid contacting him, it will make him wonder what has gone wrong.

He will introspect on his actions and eventually realize what he has done. 

Another fruitful way to make him realize that he has wronged you is to give them silent treatment. So, if you’ve done either of these, he knows! 

16. He can’t let the relationship go

There is no arguing that a man knows he has messed up if he cannot move on emotionally. 

He might have a partner, but his mind is stuck with you. So, even if he dates other women, he can’t truly build a steady relationship. 

He doesn’t know if you have forgiven him and can’t forgive himself. Unable to get any closure, he feels lost, guilty, and confused. 

17. He’s making sure that he is always available

One of the biggest indicators that a guy knows he messed up is when he tries to be available whenever you need him. 

He knows how he has wronged you, so he makes you a priority to make up for it. However, this attitude might last a few weeks, but it surely won’t last forever. 

He might go back to his earlier behavior once he has regained your trust. So, don’t let your guard down unless you have made sure that his attitude has changed for good.  

18. He stops making excuses

A good sign that a man knows he has messed up is when he stops making excuses for his behavior altogether. 

He has realized that he has wronged you and understood that the separation happened because of him. 

This is a promising sign if he is willing to make a fresh start with honesty. In this one, he is unlikely to hurt you again.

19. He’s acting chaotic

If his behavior has gone haywire, it actually affirms that he knows he messed up. He might be incessantly begging for your forgiveness. Or he might be drinking and crying himself to sleep every day. 

Such chaotic acts mean he is definitely beating himself up over his choices. If you have it in your heart to forgive him, then tell him so. 

20. He involves other people

If he’s asking your loved ones to convince you to forgive him, he believes it is his only option to get you back. 

He knows that he has screwed up big time, and so he is going to the extent of involving your friends and family.

21. He jumps into a new relationship

Another sign that a guy knows he has screwed up is when he jumps into a new relationship as soon as the separation occurs. 

Yes, this seems pretty odd to be a sign, but there are reasons!

He knows that hurt you badly and believes there is no going back from this. So, this way, he tries to get over you ASAP and not feel guilty. This might also be his tactic to make you jealous. 

22. He’s all over your social media

If you’ve pushed him out of his life, this is one way to notice whether he’s recognized his fault.

If he’s the first one to like and comment on all your posts, he wants to know what is up with you or shows you that he is still interested. 

He definitely knows that he has messed up big time. This might also be a way to slide into your DMs and try to get you back!

A word from ThePleasantRelationship

If he shows most of the signs, it is evident that he knows he has done something unforgivable. Now, it’s your turn to decide whether it’s too late or not.

But before taking him back, figure out if he is genuinely remorseful, and don’t fall for any fake promises. There is no need to consider him if he has done something unforgivable. 

Lastly, if hardly any signs click, or they click, but he’s dating someone else, don’t ponder on him anymore. Let the past go and live your life!