How Do I Avoid Wasting Time on Players and Narcissists?

How Do I Avoid Wasting Time on Players and Narcissists?
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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.

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Comments:

  1. 21
    Zann

    Gotta say, I totally agree with Dawn (21). I’m embarrassed to admit how many times a large, obnoxious red flag has been waving in my face & I’ve ignored it. Oh, it’s not that I don’t see it,  but it’s like I go into some kind of denial warp. For me, it’s usually when a man is simultaneously being flirtatious yet manipulative. Clearly, a little bell goes off but instead of heeding it, I treat it like the snooze button on my clock radio and hope against hope it won’t return again later. Except it always does.

    For example, I was dating a man who told me he had a “5 Date Rule.” If he didn’t sleep with a woman by the end of date #5, he immediately moved on because after that point, he believed the window of opportunity had closed. All that remained possible would be a platonic friendship. Cunningly, I did the math & realized this was our date number 6. I told him I had no idea what he was talking about but asked if he realized my expiration date had passed. “Luckily,” he was making an exception for me because I was obviously one-of-a-kind, so special in fact that I was worth an extension. Now, part of me was awed & a little creeped out by this man’s level of manipulation and arrogance…. but then another part of me sat up a little straighter & thought: Wow, he’s really into me. So into me he’s willing to break his own rule!

    I would like to say that I told him I was feeling a little “stale” and let’s call it a night. I did not. In fact, we became exclusive, but a year and a half later we were done; unfortunately, by then I had already turned a blind eye to so many of his Not-Boyfriend-Material antics that my self-respect was in the toilet. On top of that, I felt sad, while he clearly didn’t.

    While there may be no test for sincerity and no reliable player-radar, I agree that time and patience are the best route to take. But use that time wisely and pay attention to the warnings, acknowledge them, and don’t cling to a bad relationship simply because you’ve invested time in it.

  2. 22
    marymary

    Two years before the proposal seems long in my situation.    We won’t have sex until marriage, nor will we live together or go on holiday together. BUT I’m mindful of the rush to marry just to have sex and that really would be disastrous!
    I’m thinking a year to eighteen months, plus the engagement period.     it’s not wildly off two years.  
    I don’t think anyone in any situation should do anything that can’t be easily gotten out of in the first six months. No engagement ring, no living together, no puppy,no baby.
    The flipside is waiting too long.   If it  goes on for years it can be that one or both of you doesn’t want to get married. Or you get married cos  it seems the logical next step. Then  a day/week/year after the wedding  someone  *cough* (me) realises it was a mistake .  
    men want to get married just as much as women do.   It’s not women buying all those engagement rings.   There’s a lot of talk about masculine and feminine energy. I’m not sure of how much I agree with that but I do  think that  a man should be allowed to make that decision without  feeling that he’s being pressed into it. Maybe I’m more traditional than I think.   Friend of mine was, to put it bluntly, nagging her boyfriend to propose. I told her not to mention it for six months. Of course, he proposed well before the six months was up!

  3. 23
    Rampiance

    EVERY man is a player until he finds the woman with whom he wants to stop playing.   ~   EMK

    Yes, THIS. Thank you so much for the perfectly timed advice. I was struggling to figure out what to do about a man I love very much, and who loves me, too. I thought we were on the same page until I learned that he has a lifelong goal that remains unachieved.   I am not included in the picture with that goal, although I suspect that he thinks he can persuade me to go along with it since he is quite persuasive.   It’s a nonstarter, though, and EMK’s statement above makes my decision easy.   

    1. 23.1
      Josie

      Thank you for this reminder.   I have started to date this one guy, who honestly strikes me as a player type and his background and good fortune suggested bachelor party guy to me.   But he has stated his desire to settle down on our dates, and so far he has been following up and has scheduled our next date several days in advance . I remain wary but receptive, doing my best to mirror his efforts and see where things go.

  4. 24
    Selena

    Very much agree with Dawn and Zann.   Infatuation is powerful.   When I review my dating history every time I’ve been intensly physically attracted to a man right off – inevitably those ‘relationships’ proved to be brief and nothing more than casual. When I was younger I would blame the men. I felt like they “led me on” and I wondered how I misread their level of interest in me. I’d cry my eyes out and pine for months after they disappeared.

    As I got older, I came to understand that it wasn’t so much that they ‘played’ me, it was my own infatuation that led me to believe there was more interest on their part than there actually was. There were signs that they weren’t that into me, but I didn’t see them, or ignored or dismissed them.   I weighted some words and gestures more heavily than clearly was warranted. But this was a discovery in hindsight.   In the depths of infatuation, I might not have been capable of such honest evaluation.

    Agree with Evan, the only real test is the test of time. I will add though, that in early dating it can be helpful to keep one’s expectations modest.   When we’re  highly attracted, when we really hit it off with someone, imagination can take off creating a relationship in our mind  before one has had a chance to develop.   Understanding that is part of playing it cool. Watch. Observe. Good advice.

  5. 25
    Michelle

    “I can’t tell you how many readers/clients have told me that their relationships were great for 1-2 years, then they got married and saw a different side of him.”

    I think a lot of it comes from what others have said, women have a way of pushing stuff under the rug,  justifying and making excuses.   I’ve always been a ‘conscious’ woman and made justifications for marrying, even though I knew deep down it wasn’t going to be  a forever thing.   I wanted to have a family and wasn’t patient enough to wait for the right husband.   He was/is a good guy, just not the right man for me.   (Got 2 awesome kids out of it though, so no regrets!)

    I’m not arguing the 2 year thing, I think that’s sound advice, no matter what age.   I thought Greg’s question was a good one since I’m closer to his age.   I would say get engaged at 2 years, then plan a wedding for the next year.            

    “You have to let a marriage/children-oriented man choose you when he’s ready. You can’t push him to move faster than he’s ready — unless you want to scare him away.”   I LOVE this…HE has to ‘choose’, women accept or not accept–all through a relationship.

  6. 26
    nikoletta

    I agree with Alyssa. You take the risk, trying to keep your eyes open without being blinded by chemistry. If he proves to be a jerk, bad for him.

  7. 27
    Jane

    Yes, Dawn! A number of men may be narcissists, but we need to take personal responsibility for not wanting to see the yellow and red flags that present themselves. I, too, have been guilty of this–but I’ve also done a few things right. A little over a year ago, I met a man online who seemed to be the man of my dreams: A biotech consultant trying to change health care from within. He dressed well, owned a boat, was well educated, verbal, spontaneous, and ready for a relationship. He’d moved back to his home area (and commuted to a nearby city for work) to “reconnect with his values” and meet a woman who shared them. He swept me off my feet, wined me and dined me and showered me with gifts. He introduced me to his family and made plans to travel to meet mine. He immediately wanted exclusivity and to “book all of my free time,” and within a month told me that he loved me. Instead of saying it back, although I was falling fast for him, I asked him to talk to me about what love meant to him. His answer was pretty, but it wasn’t enough. I demonstrated to him through my actions that I was committed to him, but I also explained that as much as I desired a LTR and children (I’d just turned 37), I was happy and loved my life, and I wasn’t willing to take risks with that without the test of time. He remained steadfast. He said that in his line of work, he was expected to have a wife and children by now, and being a family man would earn him a different status in the industry. “But I’m a late bloomer,” he said. “And it’s rare that I meet someone with whom I can envision the rest of my life. But you struck me from the first, and I want this with you.” He won over my friends (most of them, anyway. I found out later that a few of the men were suspicious of him) and members of my family (although my mother said that he seemed like the kind of guy who doesn’t fight fair–and when I presented that to him in a non-threatening way, he agreed!) After several months, despite the flags I’d seen in his sense of entitlement, his volatility, and some inconsistencies, I’d fallen for the idea of him. But that wasn’t enough for him. “Please remember that I’ve been hurt before,” he said. “I’ve laid myself bare to you, made myself vulnerable. I need you to be as vulnerable to me as I am to you.” And here’s where I made the best decision of my life. I told him that I’d work on trusting his love for me, on showing him my love in the ways he needed. But I had a job I loved, too, and that job required a lot of travel interspersed with a lot of down time, and the travel over the next year was going to take me to some pretty incredible places. I wasn’t willing to give that up to rush into marriage and children, and I told him I thought it would be best to let our (seemingly perfect) relationship develop over time. “I love you,” I said, “and if a year from now our relationship is still this good–if it’s continued to grow–I will happily marry you and have your babies. Let’s just enjoy this time together.”
    Six weeks later I discovered that he’d been living a double existence with another woman–despite the fact that we spent some part of nearly every day together. When confronted, he said, “For better or worse, I was conducting a clinical trial to see which of you fit best into my life. Apparently it’s for worse because now I’m not going to have either of you.” He was wrong. She forgave him. Within two months after finding out about me, she quit her job, moved with him to a nearby city, and got engaged. She’s in her early 30s, all her friends are getting engaged, he fits a package her parents wanted her to have, so she ignored the test of time. I’ve also since learned that she’s an heiress to a large fortune, which I’m sure he’ll find a way to use to his advantage. Meanwhile, I’d been coy about any money I stand to inherit, saying only that when an elder in my family passes on, funds are cycled back into the family business, of which I am not a part. I played my cards closer to my chest. I made it clear that I wasn’t desperate to walk down the isle with someone but wanted to make sure I’d found a true partner. I got hurt, but it’s nothing compared with the pain and suffering his soon-to-be wife (and possibly their children) will endure in the coming years.  
    Ultimately, I looked into his past a bit, talked to his ex girlfriends, and uncovered a slew of inconsistencies and lies, both in his personal life and professional life. The “love of his life” who’d broken his heart? She was afraid of him and broke up with him using the tactics one uses to escape an abuser. His first job in biotech that his resume lists as “consultant”? He monitored security cameras on the third shift. After seeking direction from professionals who work with and write about narcissists and other personality disorders, I was told repeatedly that I could, in good conscience, label this man a sociopath or subclinical psychopath.  
    He thought I’d be an easy mark because I’m getting older and don’t have all the time in the world to get what I want. But my insistence that our relationship needed to stand the test of time–without the distractions of an engagement or wedding planning–may have saved my life. It’s not just about healthy dating. I actually, perhaps literally, dodged a bullet.
    To my fellow women on the dating scene: Please be careful out there. And if his ex-girlfriends warn you about him, please listen. Yes, there are few scorned women out there who are lashing out, but these pathological men use these few to their advantage. We women can be each other’s best sources for information, if we’re open to it. Remember, juvenile antics aside, past behavior is the best predictor of future behavior.  

    1. 27.1
      mel

      You were smart.

    2. 27.2
      Caroline

      Jane, thanks for sharing. I’m so pleased that you escaped from him.

      I recently dated a narcissist, and was determined to slow it down and not let him hurry me. I said to him often “we’re getting to know one another, and we’re building trust, and that’s a good thing”. I knew that he’d grown up with domestic violence, and while he seemed to have been through some personal growth, and he said he cared about me, I wanted to know what that translated into, what substance was there to the man. With time I felt he was inconsistent, and saw nothing of love in his eyes; the whole thing felt increasingly draining and meaningless. I became more guarded, and shared less information about myself, even though initially he’d made me feel safe and wanted.

      I was certainly not going to have sex with him when I didn’t feel that he had my best interests at heart, nor could we communicate, as a bare minimum requirement. It was impossible to bring up any differences of opinion with him. He put me down and made scoffing noises, which shut down the conversation. He started to withdraw eye contact and affection, and I found this baffling and cruel. I broke up with him, but he invited me to his house “we’ll sit, we’ll have coffee, we’ll talk”, he said. He also said “I did everything to make you feel safe and trust me” but “you disappear and won’t talk”, and because my oxytocin levels were low, I went. Because I didn’t know about abusive relationships, I went.

      I wanted to be kissed and held by him (he was the handsome, somatic, alpha-narc, near-irresistable). After some time at his house, he was trying to get into my pants, and when I said “I’m not here for this” for the umpteenth time, and made a move away from him, he held me down and raped me. I was easily physically overpowered; his physical strength usually turned me on, but that night it became terrifying. I thought he might be about to kill me.

      This is a very real concern for us women when we don’t know someone well enough, and they are determined to be deceitful. I suspect he had two other women (maybe more) that he was seeing as well as me.

      Evan, thank you so much for your encouragement, kindness, wisdom and advice. After being assaulted, and my emotions feeling like trampled roadkill, I was so pleased to find your blog that validated 1) my feelings of wanting to wait to have a commitment before sex, 2) waiting and observing to see if his actions and words matched, and 3) give myself time to process everything while in the relationship.

      Three months ago I was chatted up by a handsome alpha male. I wasn’t ready to date him then, but last weekend I sent him a text to say I was interested in meeting for coffee. He called me, and asked me out this week. I am going to ‘do nothing’, mirror him (to an extent) and respond with calm, playful confidence, stay in the moment, and let him lead. This is just how I like it, and it’s so great to have Evan say “yes! Do that!”. I had years of stupid advice and pressure from my controlling narcissistic mother (who didn’t even know the real me), and I’ve had loads of stupid advice from women’s magazines, (& other clueless women) none of which has ever worked.

      Evan, you are a treasure, and we are so fortunate to have you here with us. Thank you again.

  8. 28
    Goldie

    Dawn and Zann, I agree! Zann, wow, sorry to hear your story. I already posted here about my first date from hell, but can’t resist repeating. I’d originally contacted the guy on Match with a work-related question, since we were in the same field. I had no intention of meeting in person. But he texted me nonstop for a month and finally I agreed to a date. He lived 45 miles away in the middle of nowhere, so I asked if we’d meet halfway, that was when he dropped the bomb. He said that, a year prior, he’d gone on a massive drinking binge, and gave a valid reason for that (family tragedy). He then told me that he’d gotten a DUI and lost his license, and that I had to come meet with him in his town. First date that we’d set, I had to reschedule, because my car battery died on me that night. Second time, I pinched a nerve in my back four hours before our scheduled date (was the universe telling me to stay away?) Didn’t want to reschedule again, because honestly I wanted it over with. So I drive an hour one way, with back pain. I get to the crappy diner where I was to meet him and he’s not there. He texted me that he was running 20 minutes late. So I stand in front of the diner and wait for him. He calls and turns out he cannot understand my accent on the phone. (I’ve been in the country 15 years and did countrywide phone computer support for six, so, not terribly bad.) At that point, I honestly wanted to get into my car and drive back home, but didn’t want to appear crazy (why did I even care?) so waited the rest of my 20 minutes. He shows up. We get a booth, order food, talk about work, then about dating in general (he was loving it. I, at the time, not so much.) He checks his phone the entire time. Halfway through dinner, he says “I just got a text, my neighbor wants to stop by and say hi, is that okay?” I say yes, five minutes later, a woman in her 20s walks over and introduces herself! She then turns to him and asks, “so what are you doing tonight?” He tells her, “Don’t know yet, I’ll text you when I get out of here.” I’m sitting there shaking my head. She walks off and I ask him “why am I even here?” Again, wanted to leave, but it’s hard to make a dramatic exit when your back hurts so much you can hardly walk. I’ve had many first date, but this was by far the most bizarre. Which is okay, we’ve all had those. But why did I follow this up by two more dates, sex, being dumped, finding out he was banging his ex(?)-girlfriend at the same time (like, on the same days) as he was seeing me, and being depressed for a month??? I have no idea. My guess is, I evaluated this guy by external factors and he measured up okay (decent looks, white-collar professional, good income, upper-middle-class suburban background) and totally ignored the way he treated me and the way he came across as a person. All the while my inner voice was telling me to run and I ignored it. Oh well, at least I learn from my own mistakes.
      
    To the commenters asking why wait two years to get married. Trust me, there are worse things than not being married at 60, 35, or what have you. Being stuck in a bad marriage at 60, 35, etc. is very high on the list. Number one reason for getting stuck in a bad marriage IMO is, you didn’t take the time to get to know the person. Trust me, I’ve been there. We waited four years, but 1.5 of them were college, which really doesn’t count as living together as a couple IMO, and the other 2.5 were a long-distance relationship where we saw each other on holidays and long weekends, several times a year. Not nearly enough. When we finally moved in together, I felt like there was a total stranger living in my apartment — I did not know that man at all, the way he acted and treated me was completely different from the previous four years. I’d recommend to listen to Evan on that one.

  9. 29
    Sassy

    I just went on a few dates with someone. When he called to ask me out the second time, he suggested a Friday night. I was was not home to get the message, so I texted the next day that I would call him that night. I did leaving him a message that I was not available that night, but would love to see him a different night. He waited two days to get back to me and then by text. I should have paid attention to how he took my “no”. I would have saved myself interacting with someone who faded out like a self centered baby. Lesson learned! Thanks Evan.

    1. 29.1
      JD

      Do you have ANY IDEA how often women flake on men? Do you have ANY IDEA how obvious a sign it is that the woman is going to dump  the man when she isn’t eager to make times work? That she’s just keeping him around to buy her stuff until she finds a guy she likes better?

      You said that you promised to “call that night” and then didn’t.

      YOU broke this. You’re holding him to a standard that you can’t live up to.

  10. 30
    Girl in the Midwest

    Hi, I’ve been reading Evan’s blog for about 6 months now, and I really like it.   I’m 28 years old and wish I had found this blog earlier!  
      
    Anyways, I agree with everyone and Evan here.   Time will tell.   But I think having a little shrewd observational skills doesn’t hurt either.   I really like to observe people, and I think I’ve gotten better at reading people than when I was younger (though many times I’m wrong because people are complicated and many things are not black and white).   This is all from my PERSONAL experience, of course, but they can be quite telling:
      
    1.   How they talk about other people in front of me.   He might treat me well, but if he talks about others in a way that is intolerant, impatient, derisive (eg he might make fun of someone or something because he thinks I might find it funny too, hoping to impress me), belittling, etc, then I assume that is his true colors and that he’s putting on an act for me.   I feel like these things are especially revealing since he’s not directing them at me so they’re unintentional giveaways.   I don’t think I’m that special such that a narrow-minded person will actually change for the better because of me.    
      
    2.   In the earlier stages of dating, if he voluntarily says things like, “My career is really important to me” or “I’m pretty independent” he’s giving himself an easy way out for later.   (It doesn’t count if you ask him “is your career important to you?”, because then he’s just answering your question and being honest.   It only counts if he chooses to tell you out of the blue).   Suppose 6 months into the relationship, you would like to get closer by spending more time together.   He can just say “I can’t do that, I told you that I like my independence.   You knew what you were getting yourself into.” and he can walk away looking like the good guy and you have no retort.
      
    3.   In my experience, honest people with integrity never say that they are honest and have good values.   Somehow they just don’t feel the need to state that.   People who were seriously interested in me for the long term or for marriage never said to me, “I’m not wasting your time and I’m not a player”.   Obviously that doesn’t mean that if he says he’s not a player then he’s a player.
      
    Sorry if this is a repeat of previous commenters, or if it’s really obvious.   These things weren’t always obvious to me even just 5 years ago.

  11. 31
    Gina

    Great post! I am 50 and have been married twice. The first time I dated my ex for 4 1/2 years before tying the knot. The marriage lasted for two years. There were red flags, but I chose to ignore them because I just wanted to get married and thought that things would change once we were married; it didn’t. Instead things got worse. I was 25 at the time. The second time around I was 31. We dated for three years and the marriage lasted for 12 years. There were no red flags, and we are still friends 7 years later. Neither those marriages produced children. I am not opposed to getting married a third time if I met the right person; however, I am comfortable financially and feel that having a steady boyfriend would be fine also, due to the community property issues in the state of California. There are a lot of wonderful men out there, but there are also quite a few predators. A person can only hide their true character for so long. Time is definitely the best way to determine the type of person you are dating. If the truth doesn’t come out in the laundry, it will most certainly come out during the rinse! I would also advise women to listen to the gut or intuition. Sometimes you get a ‘feeling’ that something just isn’t right. I used to dismiss that feeling thinking that I was being too sensitive and overreacting. I now pay close attention to it and act accordingly.

  12. 32
    Selena

    A few years back when Evan first wrote about taking 2-3 years to decide to marry, I thought, eh at least one year, 2-3 seemed a little over cautious. Then I thought about my own partnerships. How there were problems in year one and two, and how they took a down turn in year 3.   Marriage had been on the table in each one, but had I gone through with it, I would have been divorcing in year 4. And I would have been divorced  4 times by age 46.

    I have empathy for the ladies who truly want to be married. Especially those of you in your 30’s who want biological kids. But consider please, if you do find a man who will marry you in your first year, and you manage to  get pregnant immediately, what happens if you find in year two, or three that you really aren’t great partners to each other? You go your separate ways but this now entails having to give up time, holidays with that child you wanted so badly. How will you feel then?

  13. 34
    Joe

    @  Girl in the Midwest:

    But some guys (people in general) don’t need–or even want–to spend all their free time with their SO.   They may be just fine in all other respects.   That doesn’t make them bad people.   It may make them bad for you, if you need a lot of time from your SO.

  14. 35
    Rochelle

    I agree with Zann #24 on being flirtatious and manipulative being a warning sign. When I think of “players”, I’m thinking of this breed of   inauthentic men   who deliberately   try to  manipulate  women into “chasing” them.  And    they aren’t   difficult to weed out by just giving it time. Their red flags usually come out pretty fast.    They may be “nice and chivalrous” when they are with you.   But they’re inconsistent and play tricks where they are trying to see if they can   get a woman to chase after them, or get her to “jump”. Their words are usually much stronger than their actions.      They are also typically flirtatious; of course not all guys who love to flirt are players but coupled with the above, it means you have an insincere player   on your hands. Sometimes we get too swept by the chemistry to follow our intuition on a man’s character.   Chemistry can often be a hindering factor…I’ve had to train myself to not get sucked into that “denial warp” as Zann put it

  15. 36
    Karmic Equation

    Players have their uses. Perfect as transitional men. Great for practicing your Sherry Argov “bitchiness” around. And if you do it right, you might even reform him in spite of himself. The caveat is that you can’t hang with a player with hopes for a relationship. That’s when you’ll get hurt. If you can hang with a player without hoping for a relationship, it can be fun.

    1. 36.1
      Evette

      This is a long post.   I apologize but I think it’s worth your time.   Avoid players like the DBRs that they are.   They may have diseases (herpes, hpv, AIDS, etc) and may try to sleep with you and every other women bare.   The most (only really effective strategy) that may affect a player and be healthy for the woman is to go no contact once you realize what you’re dealing with.   Men need sex and validation.   If they’re getting that, why should they change? And you’re honestly not teaching them a thing if you sleep with them and leave.   They feel like they’ve scored when you do that.   Our power is in our choice of who we give our time and attention and of course body to.   So once you realize what you’re dealing with, go no contact immediately and permanently.   Some early signs of inappropriate, player behavior and how to handle: if they say,  they’re going to call you on Sunday to plan something, on Monday, if they didn’t call- send them a text Monday morning saying that you require all men in your life to keep their word.   He didn’t so you know that you two  aren’t compatible and you are no longer interested in further communication with him.   You have moved on and he Should do the same and immediately block him on all forms of communication.   Permanently.   Many players are hot and cold in the early days so this quickly nips things in the bud.   Don’t accept that his phone died or he left his charger at home.   Don’t accept that. Also, if you said that you’re not ready to be intimate and he keeps closing.   Leave immediately. When in a safe place, text that you require any man in your life to respect your boundaries and his failure to do so shows that you are not compatible.   You’re moving on and he should do the same and block fully.   Do this with every guy that doesn’t respect your standards.   Never go back.   It wont end well.   Write down what your dating parameters are so you’re not thrown.   Obviously, avoid any guy that encourages you to drink, take nude photos of yourself, dress ssexy, etc.   And  throw away immediately any guy  that tries to sleep with you on the first date.   My experience had been that they’re all players.   Players are parasites, bottom shelf guys to be avoided at all costs.

  16. 37
    Ellen

    I don’t know Karmic, how does spending time with a man who objectifies you like crazy, controls everything (or tries to), treats you shabbily, etc. supposed to be fun?! An insipid reply, sorry.

    The only revenge I was able to enact on two players I dated for 3 and 6 months, respectively, was writing really good, really excellent actually, parting emails that skewered their characters and were so spot-on and borderline insulting that I probably had them feeling bad about themselves for weeks afterwards. Touche.

  17. 38
    marymary

    I don’t find players to be fun. I remember sitting with my player ex and the thought drifting into my mind, unbidden, “I,m bored”. And I’m not someone who bores easily. When he,s not showing off, drinking, and having sex there isn’t much going on.
    i suppose not all players are like that. not that they care what I think!  

    1. 38.1
      luckygal

      Yes!   This is so true.   I recently had a hot and heavy six week relationship with a very extroverted very handsome very alpha guy, yet our conversations were always superficial no matter how hard I tried to be open and share my interesting life…which in comparison to his grand storytelling ways, seemed boring and lame.   And all he was interested in was a lot of drinking, a lot of smoking and a lot of sex.   He even had this way of talking down to me that made me feel off balance..I can’t explain what exactly it was he would say, but just the tone of voice or something.   It was a mind trip for sure.

  18. 39
    Sherell

    No one mentions the guys that are not players and truly interested at first and then changed their minds down the road.   It happens.   I really do not get vested in relationships until much later. The key is to have a full and rewarding life and date multiple guys, even if you like one more.   Until you are asked and accept one as exclusive.

  19. 40
    Kathleen

    Karmic 39

    I can relate to what you said! I got the second Argov book ..the marrying one …which is funny but also awesome You recommended it in another topic question . That combined with Evans great book and info about mirroring has enabled me to put theory into practice.
    I had a hot prospect walk and disappear recently after I said I prefer an exclusive relationship ( per Evans video ) I was so empowered and relieved that I played it right without any emotional investment. I can bet that guy will eventually reappear because he didn’t make the conquest he was expecting.     
    His departure left me free to meet another guy who has asked me this weekend to be his exclusive girlfriend.  

    The few players I’ve met and made mistakes with have helped me learn how to play my cards right with a quality guy. I know the power in negotiation is your ability to walk away and I now feel that walking away from a player while being unattached to the outcome gives me a sense of empowerment that strengthens my resolve even more. Thats fun

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