I Tried Your Advice on Mirroring, Evan, and It Didn’t Work. What Am I Missing Here?


Hi Evan, First I wanted to say that I am really enjoying Finding the One Online. I am very glad I invested in it and I look forward to applying what I have learned going forward. Please forgive the bad paraphrasing, but you have said that women need to stop analyzing a guy’s behavior because men reveal themselves in their actions. I agree with you and recently have made every effort to apply this to my life. Recently, (applying more of your lessons) I “opened up” to a guy on Match that I might not have in the past. The first week we started seeing each other, everything he did demonstrated his interest (i.e. he called every day, he asked me out, etc.) But, after a week or so we hit a rough spot.

For example, he “forgot” that we had plans one evening and went to a friend’s house instead. He called on his way home from the friend’s house but didn’t call back that evening when he said he would. So, I called him and left a message. I heard back from him the next day. I casually asked what had happened to our date the night before. He apologized profusely telling me he forgot. I told him it was fine and that we could get together another time. He called the next day, but didn’t ask me out for the upcoming weekend.

Then, I heard nothing from him for 5 days. After several days went by I assumed he met someone else and was no longer interested. Then he sent a text saying that things “must be over for us because when I don’t call, I don’t hear from you.” To say I was perplexed is an understatement.

If this was the first time this had happened to me I would have thought it was the individual, but even my daughter has said she has had this same problem with guys. We have both experienced a guy’s chiding for not actively pursuing them. I’m talking about the first few weeks of getting to know each other, not an established relationship. Why would a guy conclude that a woman is not interested if they haven’t taken the time to call for days or asked us out?

What gives here? I thought I was applying what you had taught us, that guys reveal themselves in their actions and our job is to “mirror” their effort. So, when I don’t hear from a guy for a week I don’t think I need to call and find out why he isn’t calling. Instead, I assume he is no longer interested. Did someone change the courtship rules while I wasn’t looking? Or, am I incorrectly applying what you have taught?


Why would a guy conclude that a woman is not interested if they haven’t taken the time to call for days or asked us out? What gives here?

Dear Alisa,

Let’s say you wanted to lose 10lbs. You’ve read every diet book and every woman’s magazine under the sun and conclude that the simplest way to go about this would be to: eat smaller portions, eat healthier foods, and get to the gym three times a week for cardio. You do exactly that. For one month, you’re a dieting machine (with the occasional dark chocolate and red wine indulgence, of course.) To measure your progress, you get on the scale. You weigh the exact same thing that you did four weeks ago. Does this mean that you SHOULDN’T eat smaller, healthier portions and hit the treadmill regularly? Of course not. It might mean that there’s something else you can tweak, but the basic principles of dieting remain true, regardless of their results.

Mirroring a man’s efforts isn’t nearly as scientific as dieting, of course, but I think it’s pretty hard to contradict this principle:

Men do what they want to do. If he wants to call you, he’ll call. If he wants to see you, he will…

Men do what they want to do.

I’ve said it before and I’m sure I’ll say it again.

But if he wants to call you, he’ll call you.

If he wants to see you, he’ll see you.

If he wants to commit to you, he’ll commit to you.

And if he doesn’t do all of those things, he’s not really a suitable boyfriend, now, is he?

Your observation that men are chiding you for not chasing him down is a valid one. I’ve heard it from other women before and will admit to being perplexed by it. All I can suggest is that these men who need YOU to call THEM are pretty much like women themselves.

Just look at his reaction: a text to tell you that he doesn’t hear from you enough, so it must be over. Hate to say this, but it sounds like a woman to me. I dated my wife for a year and a half before proposing and I don’t think she initiated contact with me once in that time. It’s not because she was playing games. It’s because she knew that if I wanted to talk to her, I’d call her.

Most women don’t have the fortitude to really trust that a guy WILL make the effort for them, so you try to manipulate it subtly: “

“Hey, I’ve got tickets to the Dodgers on Sunday. Wanna go?”

“Haven’t heard from you in awhile. Is everything okay at work?”

The cold, hard truth is that you shouldn’t HAVE to do anything to remind him that you exist.

The cold, hard truth is that you shouldn’t HAVE to do anything to remind him that you exist. He knows you exist. And if he’s not making every effort for you, there’s really not much to interpret. Sure, you can go back to pursuing feminine men who are apparently too busy/lazy/afraid to say things like “So, what are you doing Saturday?” But where would that leave you?


Because you don’t know if he’s going out with you because he WANTS you or because he’s just filling time. When you don’t do anything, you very quickly figure out where you stand with a guy. Of course, nothing I write is foolproof, Alisa; there are exceptions to every rule. Only you can decide when to apply the rules and when to waive them.

But make no mistake: when we’re hungry, we eat. When we’re tired, we sleep. When we’re interested, we call. It ain’t that complex. And if this passive guy is making excuses and claiming to be hurt that you didn’t pursue him, well boo-hoo-hoo for him. He’ll find a woman that’s more man than he is, and you’ll be free to find a man who actually knows that it’s his role to pursue you. Keep doing what you’re doing, darlin’. Just because it didn’t work with this man doesn’t mean it’s bad advice.

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  1. 81

    I think the guy who pursued for more than 7 months just a serial killer, no joke. I played the hard to get for last 7 months and told him we might not be compatible with each other at the beginning. He   was willing to change himself to make me happy, and then we had this conversations for more than 7 months and i decided to see what kind of   person he is. When the first time we met each other, he was just like a gentleman that what woman wanted and then after second date, he started to tell me those truth about he was not serious and look for friend who is girl, not a girlfriend. That’s the only reason that I agreed to come out to see him because I want to have a stable relationship, no matter how long its, but i want to be courted and respected. I did slept with him too earlier because we had a strong lust chemistry between each other. So i stopped to seeing him after that and he kept texting me for another two month. I just try to smooth everything out and let it go. And he kept coming back for more, I decided to give this FWB a shot and I knew he would hurt me another time, the sex was great and he just turn into a total asshole. Here are two things that I have learnt from this guy, no matter how long a guy chasing you, they could be fake. If they started to lose their respect for you, cut them lose right away. I have to thank this guy for teaching me a good lesson. I need to focus more on my career and overcome the fear and doubts that i always have. Like my mom said if man loves you, they will be yours, if not, just have fun and keep your heart for yourself.

  2. 82

    Mirroring is the worst dating advice. I am usually in the position of being pursued and it makes me sick and tired of guys who mirror my behavior. Imagine someone copies your behavior. It creeps me out!

  3. 83

    Alisa my view is the guy is manipulative and you should go no contact…. He forgot because he is narcissistic and came back to put the blame on you to test your boundaries. This is not “feminine” as much as a red flag for sociopathic manipulator. Who forgets a date??? Even if you’re not really into the person it is abnormal. I would have blown him off immediately bc you will end up hurt. His shit test this early tells you how bad it will be if you accept it. He likely keeps you as a back burner option as scammers always-have multiple targets (women) so he doesn’t want to lose you as a supply (attention, sex, money, validation, whatever he sees in you) Online dating is full of narcs because it makes it easier for them.

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