The Dating Game: Why Women Need To Play Hard To Get

November 26, 2012  |  
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We tend to think of “playing hard to get” as a bad thing. The word “playing” is in the term so automatically we think of playing games and being dishonest. The term has gotten such a bad rap that many of us vigorously practice the art of doing the opposite—of being as open and forthcoming as possible, of over-sharing and baring it all on the first date. But this can have its repercussions too.

Playing hard to get used to be the way to go

There’s a reason “playing hard to get” was the way to go for centuries before this era of having a therapist as a hobby, and tweeting your every emotion. Maintaining some privacy doesn’t necessarily mean being emotionally constipated. It’s also just a form of valuing yourself, and showing the world that you’re selective of who you let in, which makes being let in by you seem all the sweeter. This works especially with women.


Women want to earn everything you give them

Like with anything in life, rewards are more enjoyable when earned. Why do you think the guy that sits on the street corner cat calling anything in a skirt never gets a number? Because those women didn’t have to do anything to get his attention besides exist. And there’s nothing enticing about that.

We’re much more than just a pretty face

The best “womanizer”—pardon the expression—is an incredible empathizer. He constantly practices the exercise of stepping outside his own body, and his own thoughts, and imagining what it’s like to be the woman that he is pursuing. He gets in her head. And that man recognizes that a woman is not just a pretty face. She is a complete being, with years of life lived behind her, with stresses about work, plans to achieve her goals, and ideas of how she’ll resolve that fight with her best friend buzzing through her head.

Women want to feel tapped into

A man doesn’t have to be a mind reader to win a woman over. You can’t possibly know exactly what a woman is stressed about or what her goals are. But you simply need to be aware that those exist. Because once you’re aware of that—that there is an entire being behind that pretty face—you realize just how petty the, “Hey gorgeous” line comes off to a woman. She needs to be complimented on a much deeper level to even give you the time of day.

Source: Shutterstock

The first compliment will make or break you

You see if you give a woman a compliment too quickly, she won’t appreciate it. She won’t feel all giddy and intrigued, as you’d hoped she would. And what use is a compliment if it flies right over her head? And once it does fly right over her head, you’ve pretty much lost that woman forever. A woman gages your level of intellect and sensitivity based on when and how you compliment her for the first time. She gages your ability to get her based on this, too.

Which is why you have to wait to compliment her

Tell a woman she’s beautiful within the first minute of speaking to her, and she thinks, “Great. So he can recognize symmetrical facial features and nice hair. So can an infant.” But tell a woman she is beautiful twenty minutes into speaking to her and she feels that you’re seeing much more than just the way she looks. She feels that her personality, the way she made you laugh, or how intelligent she is made you suddenly see her as a potential mate. This, of course, is not how the male mind works at all. You’ve been looking at her as a potential mate since she walked in the bar.

But women need to feel they won you over

Women need to feel that you first saw them as just another regular person, and that after you observed them and picked up on subtle details about them, it “clicked” for you that they could make a great mate. And that moment when it “clicked” is when you paid that first compliment.


But if you paid that compliment too soon…

A woman feels that what you saw in her up until the moment you paid the compliment, is all you will ever see. Because we believe the moment you pay that first compliment, is the first moment you ever looked at us as a potential mate. And if you’re already looking at us that way one minute into conversing…well that doesn’t say much for your standards. Not to a woman it doesn’t.

This concept works for any stage in a relationship

When you are finally dating a woman somewhat regularly, the next thing she wants to earn is your commitment to her. That’s why after getting that first date, you don’t want to jump into inviting her to meet your parents and move in together. Similar to how after one minute of conversing, a woman doesn’t believe you should have gathered enough information on her to know if you want one date with her, she also doesn’t believe that after only a couple weeks of dating you should have gathered enough information on her to know if you want to spend your life with her.

We never want to feel replaceable

Women need to feel that you observed them for ample time and picked up on what exactly about them would make them a good life partner. We never want to feel that just anybody would have sufficed. We never want to feel replaceable, which is exactly what we feel if anything is given to us too quickly.


We worked hard to be who we are

You know how you’ve had a hard life? Sure you have. You’ve had struggles. You’ve overcome hardship. You have issues with your parents. You have things you’re insecure about. You have layer upon layer within you. Those are all the things that today make you a strong, stable, loveable person. You worked hard to get where you are as an individual!

Well guess what? So did that woman you’re interested in!

A woman needs to feel that you see every layer of her to feel satisfied with your affections for her. She will not settle for a man that likes or loves her only after having seen the top layers. She didn’t struggle through half a lifetime, to have most of who she is ignored or looked over. And that’s exactly how a woman feels when you compliment her too soon, or ask her out too soon, or ask her to marry you too soon—that you’ve ignored part of who she is. That you didn’t even care to get that information. Love it or hate it, a woman needs you to get that information in order to feel close to you.

We also want to feel that you know what you’re doing

A slow man is also a learned man, as far as dating goes. The man that’s never had a serious relationship jumps right into one. He wouldn’t even know what traits to look for, or avoid, so he doesn’t know the value of taking his time to look for those before committing.

But a man that’s been around the proverbial block…

Knows what works and what doesn’t for him. And a woman knows that a man that takes his time to commit really means it when he finally does commit. He’s not suddenly going to disappear because something surprised him. He already took the time to make sure there would be no surprises. That’s why when a woman is made to wait for commitment, she can just relax in the knowledge that that guy isn’t going anywhere, once he does commit. The trial period is over.





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  • VeryHonest

    just too many drama queens out there nowadays, grow up already.

  • AbsolutelyTrue

    many women that play hard to get haven’t grown up yet.

  • Franko

    there are so many women that still need to grow up.

  • Jim

    “Men are too lazy nowadays…” WOW!! Good luck with that!! 🙂

  • Jim

    Maybe some men are emotionally available, will commit and all that. And just maybe some men see the pursuit of a commitment in women as having an agenda… which is more important to the woman than the man. Ever heard a woman say, “I dated a doctor, lawyer etc…” Maybe we look for a woman to love… “The me.” It seems in my readings, as it appears to me, I could spend my life empathizing with women’s plights and all the while I’ve got to ask myself, “Do they even see me?” Because, as it appears to me, a very large percentage of women are so wrapped up in themselves and their agenda’s that they can’t stop for a moment to see what men go through or who they are in themselves. My advice ladies? It’s not all about you. When was the last time you “liked” a man.

    • awesome comment! one day i grew up and had to admit, my most frustrating relationships were with men i didn’t really ‘like’. it’s not always the case, as sometimes a guy is too busy playing the attraction game and skirting around the friendship because he only sees you as a woman and not a friend. in my mind those guys missed out if i really did like them and they were not paying attention to that side of it. it is so important to value the person you are with. respect equally and reciprocally. even as a woman, i find it exhausting trying to make friends with many women, especially very pretty gals who have come to expect a lot of attention for very little effort. i can be charming when i choose to be but am just not a chaser or a groupie. i’m not here as a prop up for someone’s ego, or a light to shine in their direction all the time and get nothing back. the only people i make friends with are those who can both talk and listen, initiate and be receptive, and who can be truly present with another person – and this counts for both guys and gals.

      • earnest

        Ms, Joy – Interesting comment how you say that you can be charming when you “choose to be”, depending upon the situation. Does that mean that you hold back your “charm” until somebody has done enough to earn it?

  • York

    There’s only so many times I can scroll from the text to the title to remind myself what the article is about before giving up and confessing I’m very confused. O_o

    • Just Me!

      I literally did that 3 times, like did I accidentally click on another link? O_o Lol

  • check out my ebook on Kindle. Straight No Chaser by Janice Jade. i talk about subjects such as this and much more!

    • Alexis

      Sounds good. I’ll check it out.

  • sheena

    Oh julia….you bomb at 15 again. When will the editors stop you!

  • Me

    Aint nobody got time for dat…playing hard to get OR scrolling through 15 pages

  • Allie

    Hmmm…as sort of an answer to the commenters below and an observation ( I only got through a pages), I think what the author was trying to do was pose a thought/question to men as to why we as women play hard to get, to which there are corresponding reasons to this seemingly “big” question

    • Allie

      *a few pages*

  • ReShay

    This is confusing. Is this article geared towards men tell them to play hard to get? Or is this supposed to be how women should play hard to get?

    • Thank you. I thought I was the only lost one.