Help with a Cancer Man - Is he thinking or gone?

  • I am new to this site and a Virgo/Libra cusp. My Cancer man and I met around Thanksgiving last year on a dating site. I have read many articles regarding the speed at which cancers move. He has been single for two years and prior to that dated someone for 2 years and then 6 years. He is 27, I am 28. He has told me that he likes to know someone completely before making the decision to be in a relationship. I should also mention that he is new to the area for work. We both agreed that we could eventually see us dating very early on. Around Christmas, I told him that we could take things at his pace, but that I was not pursuing other people. This freaked him out and a few days later he said he was looking more towards having me as a friend right now than anything. He told me I was amazing, but that he didn't feel like he was ready to give me now what I was looking for. He still wanted to spend time with me and be around me he just had to back off the lovey dovey - it was too much. I should add that we had slept together by this point and he had also said he can be rather selfish with his time and he wanted to make sure that when he did get in a relationship he was able to give to the relationship what it deserved.
    After I was friend-zoned, we actually saw each other more than we did before. On average about 2x a week. I felt as though I was getting mixed signals. He would put his arm around me when we went out, intentionally run right into me, etc. I wanted to be respectful of his request to be friends and didn't pressure him for more. We ended up sleeping together though after we went out one night. Prior to this he had told me that he wanted me to know that that is not all he wanted. We have a great time when we are together, we're goofy, we sing together, play games, and I just genuinely like being in his presence even if we aren't really interacting. Sometimes when we were together sex would happen, other times not. He had told me he was not doing the same thing with other people and that he would tell me if he had sex with anyone else. When I felt it was appropriate to bring up I told him I was not okay with being a FWB and he agreed that he did not see me this way. I told him I was fine with building a foundation of friendship as long as we were moving forward even if it was baby steps.
    I went away for a week vacation. I had asked to see him the night before I left and earlier in the week he had agreed, but when I reminded him he asked when he said that. He told me he wasn't feeling up to it after work but wished me a great trip. On instagram, the next morning I see that he has gone out the night prior. I texted him when I got to my destination that I had service although I was not sure I wanted to talk to him. I said tbh, I was hurt that even if we are just friends he felt like he could not be honest with me. He could have said he had other plans or didn't want to see me. I also told him I followed him on instagram in case I didn't have service while I was away I figured we could communicate that way. I told him that that didn't seem to be of interest to him either since he didn't follow me back. He responded and said he was sorry. It wasn't that he didn't want to see me. He didn't have plans, but then something came up later on. He was going to stop by and see me early in the morning before I left. And he followed me on instagram. We talked the entire time I was gone and by the time I returned I felt like we had made good progress forward and that he really missed me while I was gone.
    I saw him the night I returned. It was very clear that he missed me and he agreed when I asked him. I didn't put any pressure on the situation, we talked frequently and he even called me to talk about something that definitely didn't require a phone call. He was checking in to see how my day was and if I made it to work okay which he did not do before my vacation.
    Now to my dilemma...
    I found out that he is still on Tinder. He and I met on another dating app, which he actually deleted before we met in person for the first time. I knew I wanted to talk to him about it but in person. I called and told him I wanted to talk and he said sure he could tell I had something to get off my chest.
    We went to the mall, had a great time, and sat down for dinner and he was on Tinder responding to a message. I wear my heart on my sleeve and so my mood immediately changes. He asked what was wrong. I told him I thought it was extremely disrespectful that he was on Tinder while he was with me. He apologized and said it was a conversation that had started back up again. We proceeded to have a really, really good conversation. He said opening up was hard for him and I said I understood and that I really appreciated that he did. I told him I didn't want to ruin a good friendship/relationship over something that could be explained or a misunderstanding. He had asked me not to put him in a position in my life where he could hurt me, but him being on Tinder did hurt me. I told him it was known as the number one hook-up site and asked what else he was seeking that he didn't have with me. I told him that it was my impression that we were both content with being more than "friends" while taking a time to build a strong foundation. He agreed that we had been taking small steps forward and making progress. I told him I was fine with the gray area and the label-less state we were in because I understood that being certain in his decision takes time. I wasn't asking for a relationship and I'm still not.
    A few nights prior I had given him his souvenir from my trip which was a bottle of Hennessy (his favorite) that you can't get in the states. He was so happy and appreciative. He put it on his instagram story and said "from the best" and tagged me. I had made a comment about now his brother would know who I was and he said so what? That same night he referred to me as "my girl" in front of his roommates.
    I reminded him of this during our convo and he asked when he said that. I had a feeling he didn't remember because he had been drinking, but I also feel like your truest feelings can come out when your guard is down.
    I asked him if he felt that I was going to hurt him and he said no, he felt like if he was honest that I wouldn't be around anymore. He has shared with me some about his past and vice versa. We have both really been burned in the past and in some ways I feel like he wants to make absolute sure that I am a safe choice.
    I told him that I was not on a dating site to find a friend and that I felt like we should either see this thru or admit it has run its course. He told me that he put me in a different category than he did any of the other women he has met. I asked if he was willing to give up pursuing other girls and see where this goes, however slow we take it, and initially he said no, then said he would take time and think about it. I asked if we could continue taking baby steps forward and he said no, because the next step for him was dating and I had no idea that he was that far along. But he agreed that he could see how he was giving me mixed signals. He also said he felt like I didn't want to be his friend and I told him I didn't just want to be his friend, I wanted to be one of his best friends because I feel like in a long term relationship that person should be one of the people you are closest to. This made sense to him. I told him we could back off the physical if he felt that we needed to focus on our friendship, as long as this was headed somewhere.
    I spent the night that night, but he left the convo saying he thinks he could have a decision by the time he returns from Mardi Gras (he is from NOLA). #1 I told him I would bow out if you wanted to pursue others, #2 we could continue as things are without the other girls, #3 we could continue as friends without the other girls and then eventually add it back in.
    I asked if he needed time or space and he said no that everything could stay the same. We talked the day following this discussion and then I have heard nothing since. This has been the longest we have gone without seeing each other or talking. I did text today and say "Hey! I missed you in my life this week. Did you want to hang out before your trip? I'm around, even if it's just for a ride to the airport." No response yet. I want to be respectful of "shell" time. I know I gave him a lot to think about and I think he is at least considering it or the bar conversation could have gone a lot differently. Is this typical cancer behavior? I reached out today because I wanted to reassure him I was being patient and focused on me, but that I hadn't forgotten about him. I believe he is still on Tinder, but I'm not sure if he is as active. I expected this until he made a decision. He did promise me he would not go on dates or sleep with anyone until after he got back and made his decision. Should I be worried that something has happened or that he has already made a decision and just not told me? I don't want to pressure him since I told him after Mardi Gras was fine. I guess I just expected things to stay the same since I asked him and there was no communication that he had changed his mind about needing time and space to process.

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