playing hard to get vs. not easy to get

guys, i’m about to break something down for the ladies.  you will have your chance to respond/cheer/tell me i’m dead wrong in the comments, but for right now, hang tight.

while i was choking down reading an article at Men’s Health this morning, i came across this tid bit on their list of 50 Things Men Wish Women Knew:

If you’re truly interested in us, don’t play hard to get.

now, that doesn’t sound so bad on the surface.  the problem is in the interpretation.  you don’t have to read more than 5 or 6 comments on that post to see that communication breaks down pretty fast.


i’m glad i pretended like you asked.

ladies, men don’t want you to play to hard to get.  real men don’t want you to “play” anything.  that’s not real.  that’s putting on a front and playing a game.  yuck and ick and gross.  don’t be that girl.  that girl is freaking annoying and only attractive to guys not worth dating.

what men want is for you to not be easy to get.

calm down.  there is a difference.  and if i don’t miss my guess, the guys already know exactly where i’m going with this.

not being easy to get means you know your own self worth and you are going to make him work a bit to make sure he knows it too.  that’s not a game, that’s wisdom.  a quality girl will not be in a rush to add a man to her life.  she will take time to get to know him and let him get to know her before deciding if he’s got a shot.  knowing he’s got to work for it because you are confident enough to turn him down is like freaking catnip for dudes.

and before you ask, no, there is no prescribed time frame for this.  sometimes you can know within the first conversation or two if the guy is worth your time.  but the important thing is not to make him feel like you’re toying with him.  that’s just not classy. 

it’s not a game.  it’s an interaction.  a testing.  a push and pull.  but more importantly, it’s about knowing who you are and placing a high value on yourself.  it’s not being a snob.  snobs are innately selfish.  it’s being comfortable in your own skin and content with just being you.

guys find that super hot.

so feel free to disagree with him, to challenge him, to make him communicate without using sports analogies.  feel free to kick his ass at Halo and walk away leaving him drooling in the midst of his humiliation.

just own who you are and expect the same from him.

for the comments:

describe your version of playing hard to get vs. not easy to get.

guys?  am i wrong?

girls?  think you can do that?

p.s. this works forever.  from dating to years of marriage.  you never have to stop being not easy to get.




23 comments on “playing hard to get vs. not easy to get

  1. From a women’s standpoint, I agree with this and have seen my guy friends agree with this as well. I feel like I am confident in who I am and have the decency to tell guys who ask me out that I’m either not interested at that moment, or after a date or two. I have seen too many of my guy friends frustrated with going out with a woman where it seems like they both had a great time but she won’t return his calls or attempts to go out again.

    With that said, I feel like what you said about guys finding that more attractive rings true because it seems like they try even harder, even when I’m straight up and say, “thanks for inviting me to coffee, I had a great time but I just don’t see us becoming anything more.”

    • I think you’re right on with this.

      The “not easy to get” girl has standards, because she knows she’s worth waiting for the guy who can meet them.She doesn’t think of herself more highly OR less highly than she ought, to paraphrase the verse. She expects the guy to display a character that’s going to be a good foundation for a lasting relationship.

      The “easy girl” is insecure and desperate. She needs people to be interested in her to feel worth something, and it makes her desperate and vulnerable. The jerks want to score on her, the nice guys want to rescue her, but she’s really got to find a right source of security and value (in Christ, I would say) before she’s ready to be in a real lasting relationship.

      The “hard to get” girl is insecure and self-centered. She gets her entertainment from putting guys through their paces, and maybe she also gets her worth from people wanting her. But she can’t really give herself to a person in something that lasts because that would mean the end of the game and require self-sacrifice to boot. The jerk wants to beat her at her own game, and sometimes she’s an easy mark because she thinks she’s impervious. Or maybe he sees her as a kindred spirit and they use each other for a while till one gets bored. The nice guy either despises her for how she treats people, pities her because he perceives the truth behind the mask, or gets pulled into her web by his own weaknesses.

    • yep. guys always prefer to have a message delivered straight and clear.

  2. Nothing worth having ever comes easy. If you want it in a hurry, you’ll want to get rid of it in a hurry!

    Games are for kids.

    That’s all.

  3. Ed Blonski says:

    I especially like the comment “this is not a game.”

    I agree with that – about everything we do and say. Life (in this world) is too short and the stakes are too high (i.e. eternal) to “play” at this stuff.

  4. I don’t think you’re wrong, but it takes a real man to play this non-game. As it takes a real woman to do it right. I do think there’s a lack in both.

  5. JBen says:

    Agree. Big surprise there.

    Yes, I think the best (and hottest) attitude girls can take is “I’m awesome. I know it. So if you want to date me, you’d better prove that you are worth my time. And I will respond to your initiative.”

    Or something like that.

  6. Joseph says:

    Amen, Sharideth. I have worked long and hard to help my wife understand that what I want from her isn’t for her to act this way or that way, but to just be herself (which I love) and be confident in who she is (which I love even more).

    To be fair, she’s working the same mojo on me, so we’re both pursuing authenticity together.

  7. Could not have put this better myself! It’s a very fine line between playing hard to get and just not being easy to get. After reading your EXTREMELY clear explanation I feel like I fully get the difference now. Nothing snags a guy like a confident girl 😉

    Loving this post!

  8. reneamac says:

    This is a distinction I don’t think I’ve ever seen articulated; it’s quite helpful.

    • yeah, i looked around the interwebz for someone/anyone defining the difference and couldn’t find anything. what i saw was a lot of interpretation, miscommunication and speculation, but no clarification. tion.

  9. Grace says:

    I like this very much. I am confident in myself and I know that I am worth working for, but guys just tend to chuck it up to me being to serious and stuff. i think this is just an excuse for them not to work hard, but hey what to do.
    I agree with the “this is not a game bit too”


  10. I may be a statistical outlier here as a guy, but I think there’s a flipside to all this.

    It’s true that “playing hard to get” is a turn-off, and it’s also true that being “confident enough to turn him down” is a big plus (actually, it’s something I actively seek – I want her yes to mean “yes!!!”, and that’s only possible if she’s got the power to say “no”, so I need a confident woman).

    I don’t like the language “make him work for it a little bit”, though – that sounds too much like “toying with him”. I think a better phrasing would be “expect him to work for it”, although again I have qualms about that, if it gets interpreted as “find ways to make him…” instead of simply, “you’re worth someone putting in the effort he would ordinarily have to if you’re just yourself”.

    The thing is, I’m always going to bring my best to a relationship, working hard at it is just what comes naturally. And that’s a key point for me. I think that the hard work shouldn’t feel like work at all, it should be effort expended but in such an “effortless” way that it just feels natural, like a perfectly performed martial arts sequence, or a perfectly executed shot in cricket (sorry, ain’t nobody gonna stop me using sports analogies – uh-uh!) So effectively, I want a partner (or potential partner) to be working with me, not against me.

    In short, I want her to see that I am not easy to get either, and I want to feel her effort coming back to me. That’s the key thing for me about wanting women not to play “hard to get”. Yes, it’s great for a woman to be confident, so her yes means “yes!!!” and she can say “no”, and she can be herself. But she needs to see that the same is true of me, too.

    She needs to know that I “will take time to get to know [her] and let [her] get to know [me] before deciding if [she]’s got a shot.” She needs to “know she’s got to work for it because [I am] confident enough to turn [her] down”. She needs to be cool with it that I will “feel free to disagree with [her], to challenge [her]” etc. She needs to know that I have my self worth and self respect, too.

  11. […] Playing Hard to Get vs Not Easy to Get on A Woman’s Guide to Women. Men don’t want women who play hard to get. But they do want women who aren’t easy to get. Check out the post to see what that means. […]

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