How Do I Avoid Wasting Time on Players and Narcissists?

How Do I Avoid Wasting Time on Players and Narcissists?

Dear Evan,

I think your male point of view may help women spot the good guys. You advise us to be careful with the alphas and Mr. Know-it-all types. Well, it’s not always easy to spot them for women, especially for the attractive ones. It’s easier for men to know other men, you can easily say if such guy is a player or not; but it’s sometimes difficult for women due to the mixed signals. I’m physically a very attractive woman, and this is sometimes a real curse since a lot of men compete for my attention, and they all seem nice, compassionate, chivalrous, and generous at the beginning, even the alphas and know-it-alls. They keep a low profile, at least for a while. I never know their real faces until I’m invested.

I wish there was a way – a kind of test for women to figure out who can walk their talks, who is genuinely compassionate and kind, before we got emotionally invested. I’m an observant person. I observe how they treat waiters etc., yet some of men are really good at hiding their true selves for a long time (until they’re sure of you). It’s a very frustrating experience for me. I wish women could have practical tools to measure up men before they got involved and eliminate the narcissists/players.

I’m looking forward for your advice from the male perspective. –Ashley

Dear Ashley,

You didn’t ask me a question. You made a statement:

“It’s hard to tell if a man is a good guy. I would love to have a magic wand that would let me know if I’m wasting my time.”

Well, you’re in luck, my friend.

If your biggest concern is that everyone puts on his best face for a long time, then the ONLY thing you can do is sit back and observe him.

You asked for a “test” that women can give to men to figure out which ones are truly kind and compassionate, instead of selfish players.

I’m not sure if you were looking for a physical object (like the aforementioned magic wand), a personality test (like the 436 questions on eHarmony’s profile), or maybe just a subtle series of questions that you can drop into every day conversation (ex. “Are you a player or are you a genuinely sincere guy?”)

If it sounds like I’m teasing you, Ashley, well, I am.

Because, no matter how important such “tests” are (and they are), and how much women want them (a lot), they all pale in comparison to the one test that I can offer that’s close to foolproof.

Yes, this is a test that everybody knows about and it’s FAR more effective than “So, where do you see yourself in five years?”. And yet somehow, it’s not considered very popular in the female community.

You ready for it?

It’s called “the test of time”.

If your biggest concern is that everyone puts on his best face for a long time, then the ONLY thing you can do is sit back and observe him.

Literally ANYTHING else you try to do to “weed him out” is going to be obvious, tone-deaf, and likely ineffective.

How do I know this? Because, by your logic, my wife would have weeded me out really early on. Check out these red flags.

• We hooked up (without sleeping together) for a month before I became her boyfriend.
• I didn’t see her six times a week; closer to 3 times.
• I was never “whipped” and never had the “you just know” feeling.
• I didn’t tell her I loved her for six months.
• I had never had a girlfriend for longer than 8 months before.
• She wasn’t my “type” – liberal, Ivy League, ambitious, East Coast.
• I was open about my confusion and ambivalence. After 16 months, I was either going to propose or break up and I didn’t know which.

So why did my wife keep me around?

Because she could tell that I was 100% authentic.

If a man wants to get married and start a family one day, he’ll bring it up. If he never brings it up, he probably doesn’t want it.

That I kept absolutely no secrets.

That I really did want to settle down and start a family.

That my moral code and integrity were my most valued traits.

So even though she could tell that I had a wide alpha-male, know-it-all streak, it was always tempered by the fact that I was sensitive, open and honest with her – even when I was confused about our future.

If she had pressed me after one month or three months as to whether I intended on marrying her, it would have been a mistake.

After six months, as I said, I loved her, but I didn’t KNOW anything for sure.

And that, to me, Ashley, is your blind spot. You seem to think that a man is a player if he doesn’t want to marry you. I’d say that there are definitely some bad apples out there, but that EVERY man is a player until he finds the woman with whom he wants to stop playing.

Who is that woman going to be?

Most likely, it’s going to be the one who is confident enough in herself and her judgment to not have to administer “tests” to her boyfriend, no matter how fearful you are about wasting your time.

So, to come full circle, let’s give you something you can take away from this article – apart from the concept of being cool and patient and letting the man reveal himself over time.

Pay attention to whether your boyfriend shares the same life goals as you. If a man wants to get married and start a family one day, he’ll bring it up. If he never brings it up, he probably doesn’t want it. And that will probably mean that you’re wasting your time.

But IF he wants to one day get married and start a family, literally the ONLY thing you can do is sit back and watch him for two years to determine if you think HE’S worth of being your husband for the next FORTY years. If he passes that test, he may be worth your time.

4
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Comments:

  1. 91
    Goldie

    I see nothing wrong with the way Tom is acting, either. It’s when a man says he’s looking for a relationship, tries to get you to be exclusive, tries to claim your weekends, and in reality has no plans of ever getting serious, that he’s bad news and should be avoided. Tom on the other hand is pretty upfront about his intentions. For a woman that’s in between relationships and not ready for something serious, I’d say he’s perfect! For everyone else, he gives enough warning to stay away. If a woman doesn’t want to listen to what Tom tells her, that’s not his problem. Disclaimer, I only read #45 and not the discussion after that. I see nothing wrong with #45 though.

  2. 92
    Fiona

    I have more or less decided that I don’t want anything more to do with men. i’m done. Too many players out there. Too many people defending their user ways. I hope the people genuinely looking for love find love and not sex. Good luck to you!

  3. 93
    Draga

    Fiona,
    I don’t know you, but what you’re saying sounds familiar. Your words and thoughts are the same as my family member’s used to be. Maybe these two links can help you learn something new.
    These are 3 musts which A. Ellis used to say we give ourselves MUSTurbation with :)

    http://rebtnetwork.org/library/musts.html
    And this is a list of common cognitive distortions from a great book by D.Burns from Stanford.
    http://healthymind.com/cognitive-distortions.pdf
     
    Cheers!
     

  4. 94
    starthrower

    I know that I am in the minority here, but I like Matthew 10:16: Be as wise as serpents and as harmless as doves.  It is absolutely a woman’s responsibility to know herself and what her limits are.  While it might mean some lonely nights, weekends, and holidays, there is great freedom in the ability to say “no”.  I’m not talking about those things EMK suggests to make a significant other happy, I’m talking about knowing yourself well enough to know whether or not we can handle casual, no strings attached sex or whether it will cause us too much emotional struggle.  The world has caused women to have to be able to compartmentalize as well as men.  Those are the times we live in.  

    With regard to this notion that we shouldn’t judge, we judge all the time and are judged.  If I refuse to be involved with someone who’s values don’t line up with mine, that is a moral judgement.  No, I’m not wagging a finger at him and calling him a bad person; we all have good and bad aspects of our nature.  But I am making the decision that I don’t want to be with someone who does not share my core values.  That is a judgement call.  In our PC society, however, we don’t want to acknowledge that there are any absolutes.

  5. 95
    Ruby

    Selena #94
     
    I brought up meeting friends because I once spent a few months dating someone who had done everything on EMK’s list except say ‘I love you”, and still hadn’t introduced me to friends or family. Such was the level of manipulation there. All the items on Evan’s “Boyfriend” list do happen along a continuum.
     
    Fiona #95
     
    Older players can be divorced too. The one I’m thinking of was still bitter about his ex, years after the marriage ended. Both guys I’m referencing expressed that their having been dumped themselves was justification for their behavior, although that may have been an excuse or rationalization. Interestingly, I haven’t found players to be entirely self-aware.

  6. 96
    Fiona

    Draga the fact that I can’t stand that society positively encourages immoral men to look for sex with no interest whatsoever in the woman and to then say to women it is fine for men to behave in this way because they are men who decided you weren’t actually worth having feelings for or marrying (although some guy way lower doen the social scale might have you if you are really lucky) so women should just accept it because these are good men really does not make me mentally ill. If men look for sex and allegedly find love how many good women looking for love are they destroying on their way? I am worth so much more than that as are most single women I know nor are we less worthy wives than most of the married women I know. I don’t want to waste any more time looking for love if women look for love and men look for sex. The odds are totally stacked against women if men just want to keep having sex with lots of women until they find one they love (which many never will). Desire is one thing, morality is what used to hold good men back from encounters with women they weren’t serious about. We now live in a world where morality is no longer holding them back and I for one, have had enough. The fact that people think I have a cognitive disorder for thinking this way speaks volumes. There comes a point when a woman has to decide not to waste any more years on a quest for love which is only going to hurt her even more the longer it continues due to the rules if the game which do not guarantee success.

  7. 97
    tina

    Each man or woman has the right to decide for themselves what kind of dater he/she wants to be.
    There is ‘friends with benefits’ dater. You know, texts and emails sometimes and you have a sex occasionally.
    Or there is so called ‘talking’ dater.  You start to spend time together, you go to movies and dinners. And most people here prefer to take a time to learn more about the person, before they share their body.
     
    Dating should be a nice experience though. And we all have different values and objectives to a relationship. I also believe in romantic love and i’m very picky when i do dates but never judge someone when he or she is a player.

  8. 98
    Karisma

    Tom

    It is great that Tom is being honest and upfront about dating casually and not wanting a relationship. How far into seeing someone, do you express that Tom?

    I was recently dating and being intimate with someone. After 3 dates. Oops.

    I made the mistake of not saying what I wanted before getting into it, till a month later. I tell the guy I do not want a casual thing. He was all full of complements and then mentions I will see how it goes.

    I assume he is on the same page as me so keep dating, seeing him. He was the one pursuing me right from the start (I never sent texts first or rang him) but we were only seeing each other once a week. He would ring every now and then on the phone, send text messages every couple of days, during the day (no sex talk at all), we would hang out and date in public.

    I had taken Evan’s advice on mirroring what a guy does when dating him. Thanks Evan! (That really opened up my eyes in this situation). Decided to apply that to this. Even though things seemed to be going well. Could still see that this guy was doing everything on Tom’s list. Glad I was not totally blinded by the amazing chemistry we had but was still very confused by this guys behaviour.

    The whole thing only lasted two and a half months. Two and a half months later, after I had brought up not wanting casual, I was able to be more upfront with what I wanted, I just had, had enough of the confusion and told him if this is just a friends with benefits thing (it surely felt like it). I don’t want to be a part of it. (That was so hard to do because I had gotten feeling for him by that stage). He ends up ending it.

    What I don’t get though is why keep it going after I told him I did not want casual a month and a half earlier? Surely he would have known what I had meant by that? That is what really hurt. He had allowed me to get feelings for him. Fully aware that I did not want a casual thing but he still kept on pursuing it anyway.

    Was that being dishonest with me and led me on? It surely felt like it.

  9. 99
    Goldie

    @ Ruby #103, I have the same experience. The biggest player I’ve met (the one I referenced above) had been separated for a year after a 20-year marriage when I met him. (Before you ask why I went out with a separated man — up until our last date, I thought he was divorced. Go figure, right?) From what I understood, he’d had little to no social life before getting married, and had pretty much married the first woman he dated. He sounded a lot like he was trying to make up for what he considered lost years. Moral of the story, we should pay attention to how the man treats us, not to what his “resume” says. Even if he says he was a faithful husband for 20 years, if he acts like a player now, he is a player. Run.
     
    My surprising discovery regarding players (I’ve met a few), was that they were all pretty awful in bed. I found that weird; I’d expected the opposite. I guess, when a man is all about himself and doesn’t care much about the other person, it shows.

  10. 100
    Tom10

    Rampiance
    I’m so happy that you are able to live your life to its fullest and explore what ever dreams and experiences suit you. In previous generations you wouldn’t have been able to do this.

    Soul
    “as a woman however, I know he NEEDS a good woman and would be much happier if he was sharing a real connection with someone right now…we are right haha”

    You could be right. Indeed I hope you are right. If I’m happier in a relationship than I am now I’ll be the happiest person in the world :) But I’ll be satisfied with either situation.

    RW
    I see your position as totally different to Fiona’s even though you have a similar outlook regarding sex and relationships. I think it’s very reasonable for you and Fiona not to choose people like me. You lie on one side of the sexual spectrum whereas I lie at the other extreme end; most people are in the middle and have the odd one-night stand and / or fling in between relationships. 

    You said: “I don’t judge people for sleeping with whoever they want to sleep with” whereas Fiona said: “I am afraid I do judge,” so that’s what makes her puritanical.

    Choosing someone who behaves in a similar manner to you is just exercising personal bias, not being judgemental.

    Fiona and I both come from similar backgrounds, were provided with the same chances and opportunities in life, and we both work hard to achieve our goals. She is a stereotypical woman and I’m a stereotypical man so it’s useful for both of us to understand how the other thinks. Her ideal is to marry a man at 20 and raise a family with him. My ideal is to date a string of international super-models and then maybe settle down. Neither of us will get that ideal but I’m perfectly happy with my reality. I’m happy for her to go out and achieve her dreams, but she thinks it’s unjust and immoral that I can live mine. I find this thinking irrational.

    Fiona
    As you say I’ve passed up many fantastic women in the past; I’ve dated doctors, accountants, lawyers and even a politician. But I didn’t ‘reject’ any of these women for being not good enough; I just chose not to pursue a relationship with them because I wasn’t in a place mentally to do so. I’m sure they’ll make great wives someday and I wish them all well. It’s just men like me live our lives according to our timelines, not anybody else’s.

    I don’t know why this upsets you because in real life we’d both sense what the other was about and stay away from each other.

    Karisma
    “How far into seeing someone, do you express that Tom?”

    I do it as soon as I possibly can, before the first ‘proper’ date anyway. I didn’t do this in the past because I didn’t think it was my job to state intentions upfront, however, it’s actually the best thing I’ve ever done. Women seem to appreciate the more honest and open I am. In fact I’m staggered at how receptive, understanding and open-minded most women are.

    Yes the guy you dated was very unfair to keep seeing you casually after you had told him that wasn’t what you wanted.

    Goldie
    “My surprising discovery regarding players, was that they were all pretty awful in bed”

    Ha ha you’re right, they are selfish thinking of their own pleasure, not yours.

  11. 101
    Fiona

    Tom I am afraid that I cannot hope that you achieve your dream of bedding lots of women because it is impossible for you to do so without hurting lots of other people. That is rational thinking. So is deciding to reject men who have treated other women like that in the past because it shows me that you really don’t care about other people so long as you get your kicks and that is not a trait I want in a partner. What I do hope for you is that you grow out of your behaviour pdq as the time when you are most likely to find a woman is both hot and nice to be a partner is actually now. Women prefer peers and will still prefer peers when you get older.

  12. 102
    Karmic Equation

    @Tom10

    I don’t find you have to reform anything. It’s your prerogative, and some scientific evidence suggests in your biology, to seek variety. In my opinion, you’ve gone out of your way to not lead women on…and I would even go so far as to say that you never had the obligation to do even that. It is the WOMAN’s responsibility to be able to determine and make an independent judgment of whether you are offering what they are looking for…to decide for themselves based on their own observations, whether you are worthy to have sex with them or not.

    Thank you for the compliment, Tom. Yes, the fact that I lack drama and actually understand men and appreciate the specialness that makes men men, makes me special in his eyes, leading him to treat me special.

    When you find the right woman, you’ll want to change for her. Just take a word of advice, even if she is the most open of women, don’t tell her the number of women in your past. I recently had this conversation with my bf and while I *guessed* it was a huge number, it was still disconcerting to have it confirmed. (He brought it up, I didn’t, btw).

    @EMK

    Evan, the way I see it, ultimately, is that women like Fiona is what drives the men of her dreams (rich, educated, well-traveled)–as well as the men of her nightmares–into arms of women like me–We need women like her in the world to create the contrast that makes men feel lucky to have found us and glad to commit to us. Women who judge men as Fiona does, are their own worst enemy and I feel sad about that.

    The problem for women is NOT that there are players in the world. The problem is that women like her are not honing their guy-dars well enough to identify the heartless players…and not having the emotional capacity to deal with the aftermath of a sexual experience should they have chosen wrong…and not having the self-awareness required to accept responsibility for their poor choices. As a analogy…many alcoholics refuse to admit they have a drinking problem because by acknowledging it they know they have a responsibility to fix it.

    @Fiona

    I don’t get how being chased by men for one’s looks would make one feel worthless. That is a total non-sequitur. The feeling of worthlessness is self-inflicted. To put it in perspective, just as someone can’t *make* another person a *narcissist* one cannot make another person worthless. It all comes from within, not without.

    By demonizing all men who want sex (which is all men in the world), Fiona, you have given the players in your past power over your present and future happiness. Do those players deserve to have that kind of power over your life?

    The best revenge is to live well and in happiness.

    @Goldie

    Funny story…My reformed-player bf has James Bond charm, so when he charmed me into bed, I was expecting James Bond skilz. NOT. LOL. In fact, I was so disappointed in his performance that for a week I ignored his obvious signs of interest to have another go. At the end of the week, he managed to corner me privately to ask.

    I looked him straight in the eye and said, “Dude, the first time was nothing to write home about. I told you I wasn’t finished and you didn’t take care of business. Why would I want another go??”
    HIM: I had to go work the next morning and would only get another hour of sleep as it was. I don’t have to work tomorrow and can spend all night with you tonight. I promise to do X,Y,Z to you.
    ME: So me first this time? You promise?
    HIM: Yes.

    He came through, but I did have to teasingly remind him of his promise throughout the night. He kept forgetting in the heat of the moment. It was kinda cute…Fond memory that.

  13. 103
    RW

    @Tom

    Fair enough.  I didn’t say so specifically but after reading your posts, I do appreciate the fact that you are honest upfront.  That is all anyone can ever ask for.  

    In retrospect, I guess I do judge after all.  starthrower has a point.  I judge because I have a definite sense of what is right and what is wrong but I only apply it to myself.  What someone else does is none of my business as long as I’m not dating him.  I get really angry though, when I see people hurting each other, men or women.  A friend got burned not too long ago and it was awful to see.  She met a guy online and after a string of lacklustre first dates was surprised to find that she really liked this one.  They dated for a while, seeing each other 2 or 3 times a week.  He seemed like a good guy (and possibly was).  At some point (1.5 months in maybe), he started to push her to have sex.  She was uncertain, not because she didn’t like him but because she wasn’t sure where the whole thing was going.  She finally caved.  A few weeks later he bid her adieu saying he didn’t have feelings for her.  Changed your mind about her?  Fine.  It happens.  But then don’t sleep with her when you know she’s really into you, is reluctant about sex and is looking for a long term relationship.  What really got me was the reason for the breakup: “I don’t have feelings for you.”  He didn’t know this 3 weeks earlier?  As many of you will point out she is absolutely to blame for caving.  But what happened to integrity in a man?

    I’ll be honest, your way of life sounds like a lot of fun!  I just don’t think I could handle it.  I wonder though, will you get used to this kind of life and by the time you want to settle down will it be too late?  I think this is especially true for a woman who wants to settle down eventually and have children.

  14. 104
    henriette

    Fiona100 – I’m sorry that you’re (currently) feeling defeated in your search for love and I sincerely hope that you’ll change your mind and re-join the fray, whether now or after a short “dating break”.  I know that this process can be demoralising at times, but all you need is ONE good man and finding him is worth effort.   Then again, if you do decide to permanently stop dating, there are far worse fates than being a fulfilled single woman and/or SMC (single mother by choice).  
     
    I’d like to give a slightly different spin on the “men shouldn’t sleep with women unless they want a relationship” issue.  I have 3 single brothers:  tall, handsome, high income, pretty good guys.  Plenty of women make it clear that they’re open and ready for sex with them on date 2 or 3.  At that point, who – male or female? – can know if they’re right for a relationship or not?  It seems to me that these women are 1) just up for some fun sex that they know may or may (probably) not lead to a serious relationship 2) using sex to try to catch & keep guys they perceive as good prospects  or 3) weirdly naive, believing that after a couple of dates one can know enough about another to enter into a committed relationship.   I feel bad for my brothers to be put in the position of always having to guess – sometimes with unpleasant consequences – which is the case.

  15. 105
    Michelle

    “What I don’t get though is why keep it going after I told him I did not want casual a month and a half earlier? Surely he would have known what I had meant by that? That is what really hurt. He had allowed me to get feelings for him. Fully aware that I did not want a casual thing but he still kept on pursuing it anyway.”

    So many great lessons to be learned in this experience.  This is what life is, a series of experiences that we can learn from (or not, most people don’t).  Doesn’t make the experience any less uncomfortable, saddening or angering.

    1.  The communication didn’t sound clear enough, on either end.  Sounds like he he got away with being ‘vague’.

    2.  Assumptions…not a good thing in relationships, romantic or otherwise.

    3.  He continued to make contact, and there was consistent response.  If I was a man I would think the woman didn’t didn’t mean what she said since the actions didn’t match the words (men are action oriented).

    3.  He was doing the things on Tom’s list, but there was still hope that he would ‘see the light’ and want what you wanted.  

    It’s very, very common for women not to speak our truth, for many reasons.  This is our issue though, not anyone else’s–we’re NOT victims.  The only way to overcome this is to have courage and practice communciation skills.  I think women would be endlessly surprised in so many ways if they could learn to speak their truth.

  16. 106
    Karisma

    Michelle

    Agree with you and have thought all those things after what had happened with that guy.

    I did speak up and was more upfront with what I wanted at the end of that two and a half months. Remember that! Just wish I had been more so, a month into it. Yes. He was being very vague.

    I remember feeling disappointed after getting that response. I just did not want to pressure him that’s all. But know now to not be afraid to walk away if it is something I do not want to hear.

    Kicking myself and so annoyed at myself for not speaking up, more so then regardless! I would have saved myself a lot of grief. Lesson learnt.

    Even though I was very hurt by the whole thing. At least I do not have to deal with confusion of the whole thing anymore which was doing my head in. That was a total relief to be free of all that!

    Evan

    It still baffles me why he still pursued me if he did not want anything serious after I did mention that I did not want casual. Besides the obvious answer. With still sending texts, dating me and getting to know me in between if he was not up for anything serious. 

  17. 107
    Draga

    Fiona,
     
    I would never imply that somebody had a mental illness, since I’m not qualified for that. Everybody has cognitive distortions, they are part of the human way of thinking. 

    My cousin doesn’t have a mental illness. Her problem was that she had high expectations from younger colleagues at work. It turned out that most of them didn’t care about their company, had gladly used her experience and knowledge to gain new skills and than would leave either for a better company or to start their own businesses. She was constantly mad because of this, thought that they were just a bunch of users, then felt helpless and hopeless about the whole situation… Then she tried not to share her knowledge anymore with anyone, which resulted in people leaving even earlier than before, which brought more troubles… There was something in your way of reasoning that simply reminded me of hers, that’s all.
     
    I remember when she presented us (our extended family) with MUSTs and cognitive distortions that we all enjoyed learning about them and then teasing each other whenever we would caught somebody using that way of reasoning. I just wanted to offer it to you as a tool, if it suits you.
     
     
     
     
     

  18. 108
    Tom10

    Fiona
    I don’t expect you to wish me well or expect you to date men like me. It’s only fair that you reject men with my history and I respect that. I was just struck how you said it would be “rough justice” if I end up settled with kids in 10 years. My point is that the universe doesn’t owe either of us what we want, yet we were both lucky enough to be equipped with the tools (you are beautiful, intelligent and successful) to go out and get what we want. I just find it odd that you think it’s unfair that I chose to live my life the way I have and still attain my goals.

    “the time you are most likely to find a woman is both hot and nice to be a partner is actually now. Woman prefer peers”

    You touch on an important point. Without meaning to sound crass, selfish or misogynistic; I don’t care what women want, I care what I want. Just like you (rightly) don’t care what men want, you care what you want.  I’m 29 so I meet plenty of interested 29 yr old women. But I also meet women from 18 (a bit young for me) to 36 who are interested. However, I feel like I’m still reaching my peak and have another few years to go: at that point what woman do you think I’ll pick? The 27 year old of course. I know this is unfair, but it’s life. I know every 27 yr old won’t want me then, but I only need one.

    Karmic Equation
    I agree 100% that I’m going above and beyond my obligations to look out for the well-being of others and I never used to say anything, however, I had a bad experience last year. I met a girl at a bar, we went back to hers etc etc. To me it was just another weekend and another story, but apparently she actually thought I was ‘the one’. I was shocked at how naïve she was at 25. We met up a few times but it was clear she got the wrong idea. When I tried to finish it she effectively had a breakdown and turned psychotic. She claimed she was pregnant (I knew for a fact this was a lie), and turned into a stalker etc. Thankfully after many months of comforting that I was the one with issues not her, she calmed down and understood. I know that technically it’s her problem not mine, and she clearly shouldn’t be meeting men in bars, but I still do my best now to tread carefully; that’s why I’m upfront. Besides every woman I’ve told so far has taken it with a pinch of salt (once I see how great she is I’ll change my mind kind of thing).

    Thanks for that tip but don’t worry I won’t tell any woman my number. In fact I don’t know what it is myself as I stopped considering it relevant years ago! Yes I’d say you have a better understanding of men than any woman I’ve ever known; that knowledge is powerful, use it carefully! ha

    RW

    “What happened to integrity in a man?

    Yes your friend’s scenario sounds hurtful and I’m careful to avoid leading women into those situations, but it’s not gender specific as you seem to be implying. You’d be shocked at how easily women dump men just as quickly and without explanation (some women don’t seem to think we also suffer pain for some reason); it’s just the way it is these days. To survive in this big bad world we all just have to toughen up emotionally. It’s every man or woman for themselves out there and that’s just the way it is. No use complaining about it.

    “I’ll be honest, your way of life sounds like a lot of fun! I just don’t think I could handle it…by the time you want to settle down will it be too late?

    It is a lot of fun! I meet smart, funny, sassy women almost every weekend and they all have a story to tell and a life to live. But there are downsides to this hedonistic joy; I get dumped and knocked back a fair bit, but I can handle that. The energy required is enormous which it takes its toll, and I also see a fair bit of loneliness which saddens me. I always used to wonder why women picked me up as a stranger at a bar, and brought me back to hers just for a cuddle. Now I know why.

    How can I leave it too late? Unfortunately fertility is the one trump card that men have on women which I acknowledge makes the dating game unfair. However, it is in my interest to use this card to strike the best possible deal I can. Women have their own cards which they should use to strike their best possible deal. Even if I do leave it to late I won’t be unduly upset – chickens coming home to roost and all that.

  19. 109
    Some other Steve

    If Fiona rejects every guy who’s ever been a guy, I fear she will find very slim pickin’s in the partner department.

  20. 110
    Fiona

    Karmic I do accept my share of responsibility for allowing myself to have been duped by players. I don’t accept responsibility for them being jerks and nor do they no doubt. Not sure I agree that women like me make all men appreciate women like you all the more. Maybe true of the players but not sure this is true of men who want a loving girlfriend who doesn’t engage in casual sex all over town which I am. If the players prefer you that is fine with me. You accept them where I do not so it is not surprising.

  21. 111
    Fusee

    Fiona,
    I really understand your values. I have the same. Have your opinion and don’t judge. Plenty of women enjoy casual sex, and it’s up to us to educate our younger and naive friends and relatives who might not know how men function. That’s pretty much all we can do.
    However it does not mean that you have no other option than dating a player (reformed or not) or give up completely. Men sharing your values exist, but you must choose your priorities… We just had that long thread on your question to Evan regarding your education requirements, and now it’s about your sexual values requirement… At some point you’ll have to write down your priorities and decide what is your absolute deal-breaker. 
    For me although I could also have written plenty on education, etc, when it came down to must-have, something that if it does not exist would mean for me to be single, it was character, morals, and ethics. Since i like RW I do not have sex outside a relationship that has not a goal of going long-term if possible, it meant finding a man who would have the patience to wait and the courage tho talk about serious topics early on. Since it’s not easy qualities to find I had to give up pretty much all other requirements and simply see what would happen. Because I was perfectly happy single I did not make any effort to meet men, just kept myself engage in activities matching my values and interests. And then I met my boyfriend. Like every men he was interested in sex, but as I explained my values and goals he realized that he had two options: trying with another woman or taking me seriously. He chose patience and he got more than he thought he could ever get. I had to accept some complications as well. Relationships are negotiations. You have to drop the unnecessary but you have to stick to your true values. Then you’ll meet

  22. 112
    Fiona

    Tom the difference between you and me is that I do care what men want. I care what good men want in a long term partner because I want to make someone happy not just me and I do care if I hurt someone along the way. I don’t care what players i.e. men who sleep around with no intention of caring about anyone want. You aren’t comparing like with like. Given that I have always had love to offer and have never treated others carelessly I would say yes it does seem pretty rough to see someone who doesn’t care about anyone else for years end up in a loving relatiionship while I end up with nothing. Then again life isn’t fair. I do not agree with Evan that all men are players. Many are not.

  23. 113
    Rampiance

    RW @ 111 and anyone else who has noticed that men (players or not) who are pushy are not good in bed ~~ the two observations are related.
     
    A man is pushy when he’s desperate or when he’s inconsiderate or when he’s out of sync with the woman. 
    Desperation: it’s all about him and his gratification, not hers
     
    Inconsiderate: he doesn’t think about her satisfaction, maybe because it hasn’t occurred to him, maybe because he doesn’t care
     
    Out of sync: he doesn’t know how to connect with a woman at the level that it takes to be sexually satisfying to her, or he’s just not on the same wavelength she is
     
    So I would recommend pushiness about sex as a signal to back away from a man. My observation has been that the best lovers NEVER push for the initial sexual encounter with a woman, probably because women take the initiative with them. These men have super confidence in their magnetism and charm, and that whole package draws women in.
     
    In response to some of the confusion about my post #83, I meet men as potential friends, not as potential lovers, not as potential boyfriends, not as potential husbands. A few do become very good friends, and I consider that to actually be a higher standard than convention applies to the other categories.
     
    I, like Tom, tell men I’m meeting (at the first potentially date-like meeting) that I’m not seeking a boyfriend. And just in case anyone was sidetracked by Fiona’s mean little barb about “a host of random men”, I am VERY selective about my lovers. That’s why I’m almost always very happy with them and rarely disappointed.

  24. 114
    Barry

    I am going to agree somewhat with Fiona.
    Women are not men. The act of sex will push them to bond with men. Its biology.
    Acting like men, and seeking out casual sexual relationships is not a game women were built for, and its not a game that they can win.

    And yes, men should be aware that their selfish desires could cause emotional damage to a women. Also, for some women this damage will be cumulative, and far from a short sting. Men should be more responsible.

    That said, women are indeed the gatekeepers of sex. They have total control. All they need to do is withhold sex until commitment. Its as simple as that.

    Well I say simple. The strategy is almost certain to lose the alpha male who doesn’t need to wait around. It might work four a young and pretty woman, but   that is all.

    The real problem Fiona faces, and indeed most women, is that they are only willing to date men who can afford to be players. They do not want the men who are looking for commitment.
    Men like Tom have the power to do what they want, because WOMEN have given him that power. Its their fault. You can only win with these men if you possess the right currency which is youth and beauty.

    So reality check. The older you are as a women the more you have to compromise. It doesn’t matter if women want ‘peers’, because they have no power to demand one. The Toms of this world will win whatever their age.

    Fiona, there are a huge number of men who will love you for who you are – right now. They are ready for a relationship. They are the ones you completely ignore, the ones that are invisible to you.
    I’m sorry that this is the case, the world is not how we would wish it, but you have to lower your expectations. Probably quite a lot.

  25. 115
    Aisling

    I am with Fiona and a few of the others on here. I’ve never been a fan of casual sex because it is unfulfilling (yes, I did try it a few times when I was much younger).  However, I know women in my general age group (over 45) who can’t go a week without sex. They have much higher libidos than I do.  Only with the relatively few men I have felt a strong connection/attraction to has my sex drive gone into full gear.  Just the way I am wired. Maybe I missed out on a lot of fun, but I also avoided the unplanned pregancies and STDs some of my friends experienced.

    As far as men like Tom are concerned, I have been able to recognize them since I was very young. Not bad guys, just men I know I wouldn’t fit with. Goodlooking, charming, suave, funny.  I never tried to date men like them, thus never had a problem with them.  I don’t feel that I lost anything because we wouldn’t have matched, anyway. Wishing that these types of men had a different focus gets me nowhere.  It is what it is.

    I have a cousin who is now 55, a stockbroker, never married.  He is reasonably attractive, has beaucoup bucks, and is funny and sociable.   Over the years, I have watched him date one highly eligible woman after another, one for as long as 9 years, but never could make that committment. Then, he developed a condition called psoriatic arthritis, which can be totally debilitating, and it certainly has slowed him down.  Now, he still has the money, but he can’t keep up the pace of partying, etc that he used to. My aunt tells my mom that he is frequently in tears over some of the choices he has made, and all he wants is to settle down and have a family. She has lost patience with him, and has told him she’s tired of his whining.  Oh, and with regards to fertility, just because a man CAN sire later in life doesn’t mean he necessarily should.

  26. 116
    sarahrahrah!

    Wow! 

    Excellent post and response by EMK and so much wisdom shared here by the commenters.

  27. 117
    Some other Steve

    @Aisling #123
    “Wishing that these types of men had a different focus gets me nowhere.  It is what it is.”
    Realizing that you cannot wish away realities of the world seems to be really, really healthy.

  28. 118
    Tom10

    Fiona
    Firstly morality.
    Morality is specific to each individual and is not a universal absolute. Your morals are irrelevant to me because I have my own set of morals. You think I’m immoral for having random sex, whereas the Pope and the Iranian moral police consider you immoral for having extra-marital sex. Thankfully we both live in countries which allow us to take control of our own sexuality. However, with this right we must assume the responsibility that goes along with it. If I pick up an incurable STD or impregnate an unsuitable woman I have to take responsibility for that. The same goes for women who sleep with men without commitment – they have to take responsibility for the consequences. You are not better than me for exercising your sexuality in a way that suits you, just different.

    Secondly what women want.
    When I said I don’t care what women want I didn’t mean that I don’t care about their welfare. I have a mother, sisters, nieces, female friends and colleagues and I care deeply about what they want. I meant that when I’m looking for a woman, I don’t care about the criteria that she uses to pick a mate (educated, ethical etc); I care about my criteria (hot and sexual). That’s why I found your comment that “women prefer peers” comical. Who cares that women prefer peers; many men don’t prefer their peers and that’s their prerogative. Likewise when I said you don’t care about what men want I was talking about the older men, manual labourers, and launderette operatives etc who are attracted to you. You don’t care that they are looking for young, hot women because you are thinking of your own criteria.

    Barry
    I am beginning to agree with you that women are the authors of their own misfortune; however, you can’t blame them for wanting what they want. I feel sorry for women because many of them are so critically naïve when it comes to men that they are guaranteeing that will end up single later in life. Women (particularly attractive ones) in their 20’s don’t have to understand men or hone their skills because men come to them. When they lose their youth and beauty (their power over men) they are hopelessly lost because they don’t have these skills or understanding. That is why Evan’s advice is so important.

    Men go out from a young age seeking sex; therefore the onus is on us to understand women early to get it.

    Aisling
    I’m not in any way advocating that women engage in casual sex; I agree that it doesn’t suit a lot of women and that people should be very careful when indulging in it. I am just advocating taking responsibility for one’s actions and emotions, and also to know what your goals are and then learn how to go out and achieve those goals.

    Good warning on not leaving it too late btw. I agree that there comes a point beyond which men probably shouldn’t sire children. That point is when they don’t feel they have the capacity to rear them for the next 20 years.

  29. 119
    Jenna

    Karmic provides some really interesting insight here but I wish she would be more understanding of the fact that most women aren’t built for casual sex, nor should they try to be. We’re not men, and shouldn’t apologize for it. I do have casual sex myself, but not entirely by choice – I’ve been single for years, have a high sex drive, and refuse to be celibate while I’m in my prime (an attractive late 20s woman). I would love to save it only for a relationship but I can’t find the relationship I want, even when I hold off on sex with men I’m dating who I regard as serious ltr prospects. At times, I feel uncomfortable with my behavior, but I really do have a high sex drive that has to be met somehow. While I don’t sleep with guys like Tom, at times I get more emotionally invested than I should.

    I sympathize with Fiona, but honestly, there are a ton of men out there who aren’t players out for casual sex. That seems to get really overplayed on this blog. Most of my friends are (nerdier) men, and I reglarly go out with guys – including some puas – as their wingwoman to help them be more successful with women. I wouldn’t do it if they were out to scam girls and use them for sex, though; they’re just trying to have more options and find a nice girlfriend. I never understood until I started doing that just how rough the majority of men have it – women can be so rude, flaky, and fickle! 

    Frankly, I take some of what Evan says with a grain of salt, because he’s only speaking for the top 20-30 percent of men, and I don’t want a guy like him, a sexually aggressive alpha male. He’s only offering one perspective, which Fiona shouldn’t let upset her.

  30. 120
    Fiona

    Tom your attempts to compare your behaviour to mine use skewed logic. I don’t want men who are much older than me, unintelligent or unattractive. I am not however doing anything other than what is necessary to hurt them – I’m not sleeping with them, I’m not leading them on and I am never going to do either of those two things. They might be upset for a few minutes if I turn them down. That’s it. You can’t compare that kind of rejection with dumping someone after sex.

    When I said women prefer peers my point was that you should be aware that when you are older and seeking a partner you may find that you won’t get much attention from the younger women who will be generally seeking men their age and your choices may be somewhat restricted to the remaining women of your generation that your peers haven’t already snapped up while you were sleeping around. It really is a myth that most women prefer much older men.

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