I happened across these images, for which I have no source, no amount of Googling gave me the name of the film they are from, but I loved them …
I have been accused of “playing hard to get” more times than I care to recall, and every time it was by a man who was not finding success in connecting with me. “Playing hard to get”, as we think of it, is not the common female phenomenon that most straight men would have you believe it is (and forgive me, I’m speaking from a cishet POV here because that is my experience).
Do I play hard to get? No. Am I hard to please? Yes. And let me tell you why:
Flirtation and Interest ≠ Playing Games
Playing games, mind games, mind fucking, cock teasing, bait and switch; there are as many terms for this behavior as there are ego bruised men complaining about them. The fact is, that getting to know someone with romantic and or sexual intent will include signs of interest and flirtation. The two-steps-forward-one-step-back dance is a tale as old as time and most everyone knows how it works. The part that seems hard to remember sometimes is that people change their minds and that’s okay. It can be confusing and even a bit hurtful to be mid way through those common dance moves, so to speak, and have the trail go cold. It can also smart to feel like you invested time to get to know someone and it went nowhere. Neither of these scenarios necessarily mean that the person was “playing hard to get” or playing at anything at all, yet the hurt takes over and something that may have been par for the course gets re-framed as malicious time wasting or inconsiderate behavior. Think of what it takes to meet, connect with and pursue a liaison or relationship. Would it be a sound strategy to purposely be coy? Has that really ever worked for anyone?
I don’t play hard to get, because I legitimately am. I don’t need to be coy when I’m already picky. That would be a go-nowhere anti-solution to meeting people and finding compatible partners.
Standards are Not the Problem
So am I really so hard to please? I think for a lot of people, I am, in the sense that there are certain standards I adhere to and behaviors I won’t tolerate or accept excuses for, without exception. And I’m the queen of exceptions. I live my life trying to give people the benefit of the doubt and reasonably understanding that ‘life happens’ and things can be messy or off schedule or just plain inconvenient. I also know that past behavior is a great predictor of future behavior and that what you tolerate will continue.
These “standards” are not unachievable: be kind and interesting, interested in me and share the same values. Listen, exhibit integrity and consistency and you will absolutely hold my interest. Ever want to get rid of me? Ignore me, stop being consistent with your communication and I will keep walking and not look back. For some, that’s too stringent, to which I say, well, don’t be lazy or appear to be disinterested. It’s not hard.