Is it the kind of relationship where, if you just didn't get back to him for a few days, or turned him down the next couple times he tried to set up a date with you, you two would gradually drift apart? I haven't read all the backstory, but if you're not even exclusively dating anymore, I'm not really clear on what exists to "break," you know? He knows he can date other people, you know you can date other people, just stop... dating each other.
If he's really into you I think this approach would be rude; but if he feels the same way you do, maybe the relationship could just die a natural, quiet death if you two simply ceased communicating/doing things together for a while. Am I totally off-base here?
Thanks for all the replies. I would never lead him on or anything like that - I've actually even been behaving towards him as more of a friend than anything lately. Due to a death in the family in the past couple weeks, I haven't even been to his place in nearly a month. He visited here twice in the meantime, but just for a few hours both times and they were more of a hanging out a friends kind of thing.
Even though we're not exclusive, there is still something to "break", so to speak. And gradually drifting apart would definitely not be appropriate in this situation. Back when I told him I wanted to take a step back, I brought up the fact that I wondered if it would be better to break up. He was upset at the thought and said he didn't want that - which is when I agreed to just drop the exclusive part and just date casually and see what happened.
I felt awful for making him feel bad and I admit that breaking up did seem kind of harsh and somehwat of an overreaction at the time. And I was fine with removing all "labels" and whatnot (that just sounds silly, but I don't know how else to put it), but it still almost seems like there's an unspoken label to the whole thing. I know it doesn't make any sense - I don't know how else to explain it, sorry. :/
At any rate, I guess I just don't feel anything anymore and even though he's so nice and smart and has all these good qualities, I just don't think "us" is working (or ever will). And rather than waste his (and my) time, so to speak, it just seems like it'd be better to just be friends. Or if he's uncomfortable with that, then a clean break I guess.
I'll take the advice to heart and do my best. I'm going to go visit him tomorrow night and we're going to go shoot some photos on Sunday. I'm going to see if I can work up the courage to at least bring up the topic and see how he's feeling. Shoot, he may surprise me and agree with it. I guess I'm hoping that it turns out I'm worrying for nothing.
Either way, however, thanks for all your help.