Ok, so I’ll admit this much to you… I’ve had my fair share of women and their dirty little mind games, and I fall for them every time. This one girl in my early teenage years had me so obsessed, I literally sold my dad’s toolbox to take her out. My dad beat the crap out of me.

Looking back, I now understand that this is all a game of charades, a cat and mouse kind of thing. In Derek Rakes’ own words,

“Playing mind games is the woman’s natural way to qualify a man’s suitability as a mating partner”

In this sense, maybe it’s okay that women play mind games on men, and maybe it’s okay that we men fall victim of this psychological warfare. It has been said way too often that understanding women is a fulltime job, and I totally agree. They are complex creatures, and I dig that. A lot. Perhaps these mind games are meant to separate the quitters from the go-getters, or maybe they want to exercise control in their relationships. But who are we kidding… They do it because it’s fun to them.

Then again, maybe it’s not such a bad thing. Just because she’s playing mind games on you doesn’t mean she’s a bad person. As men, we play these games on women too. So the first thing you need to understand is that you’re not alone. Women have been playing mind games on men since King Herod’s time. They should probably make a movie about it.

In this article, I’ll break down some of the mind games women will (if they haven’t done it already) play on you. Please, don’t feel stupid. We’ve all been there.

The Waiting Game

Whenever you call her, she lets the phone ring a couple of times before she picks up. You text her, she replies after an hour or two. You show up at her house to pick her up for a date, she makes you wait for hours on the couch as she gets ready. Sound familiar? The waiting game is a classic game of patience and she will play it on you until you do something about it. The craziest thing about it all is that the more she makes you wait, the more you chase after her. Your mind has been set for a challenge, and it will not stop until it wins. She knows you are dying to be with her, and she will try and use that to her advantage.

Flirting with other guys

I have this lady friend, (and yes, she is just a friend). She tells me that we should hang out more because she needs to put off some guys. I can’t say that I am handsome enough to make other men in her life jealous, but I know it works. We hang out all the time, she laughs at my jokes, and we have a good time in public. Guys chasing after her don’t like that. The truth is, she goes through all that trouble to avoid dealing with insecure men who can’t handle a little jealousy. Jealousy is good for every successful relationship if done right. So relax. Your crush is probably not attracted to all guys she hangs out with. She knows you like her, and she’s just putting you to the test.

The “I need all your attention” game

You are out with your girlfriend doing some shopping in the supermarket. Then this young lady out of nowhere walks past you and accidentally trips and falls. You rush to help her up (as I imagine any good person would do) and she thanks you politely. You talk to her for just a few seconds, and now your girlfriend (who is just standing there watching) wants your attention back. So she brings up her pain from an injury she had three weeks ago, and she is so good at faking her pain that you have to forget about the girl who just had an accident and tend to her. Then when you finally get home, you ask her if she’s feeling better and she gives you a silly smile. Yeah, girls do that.

Related: Reasons Why You Should Seriously Consider Dating an Older Woman

The Bait

If she ever says, “I look fat in these pants…” or “I think I’m growing fat…do you?” don’t take the bait. I repeat, don’t take the bait. Your opinion is important to your woman, and she always wants to make sure that you find her attractive. But she is too smart to ask you that directly. So she will frame the question in a way that validates her own opinion and hides her real intentions. Whatever you do, don’t jam the foot into your mouth. Instead, be assuring. You can say, “I don’t care what you wear, you will always be beautiful to me. Sounds corny but it’s super-effective.

Playing dumb

This one time I had some friends over, we were watching a basketball game. My girlfriend was in the kitchen reading a novel about BDSM (I’m such a lucky guy, I know). Halfway through the game, I ask her to grab some beers and bring them over and she was all like, “I don’t know where you keep the beers, honey.” What? She drinks those beers too! But she’s my girl, and obviously, she didn’t want to put the book down. Women will play dumb when they don’t want to do something. In my case, she knew the beers were in the fridge, she just didn’t want to get them.

The “Seduction” game

Believe it or not, women want you to earn that sex, even if you’re already married to her. She knows you will submit whenever sex is on the line, and this sense of control is exciting to her. In the “seduction game”, she will try to get you to do something you don’t particularly enjoy in exchange for a “good time.” Sure you could just refuse to do what she asks, but it’s sexier if you submit, and it keeps the relationship fun. Every woman wants a man who occasionally helps around the house. So doing what she asks earns you her respect and you get lucky. It’s a win for you.

The “We need to talk” game

It’s a Saturday evening and you’re enjoying a Lakers game with the guys. Your girlfriend comes up and hits you with a dreadful “We need to talk”, and now you’re thinking to yourself, “What did I do this time?” It’s about to get real. You get to the bedroom, all your clothes are on the bed, and she’s looking at you like you just killed somebody.

“What’s up babe?”

“Don’t babe me. I’m mad at you. I keep telling you to toss your dirty laundry in the laundry basket but you just leave everything lying around. You don’t even listen to me anymore…”

So now you’re just standing there looking stupid, with nothing to say. What she’s basically doing is playing with your guilty conscience to remind you that she should be a priority for you. She interrupts an important aspect of your life, like a football premier, with what would seem a silly excuse to you, but if you listen close, it’s silly, and she’s not crazy. Women will play such mind games on you if they feel their relevance to you is threatened by other facets of your life.

Reverse psychology

The reverse psychology is another definitive mind game played by women that most men never understand. Basically, she wants you to do something, but she doesn’t want to ask directly. So she implies it through her actions and expects you to figure out what she really wants. Take this scenario for example; It’s 1 am, your girlfriend is having trouble sleeping. You are in the living room playing online 2K with your friends. She wants you to come to bed, but she doesn’t want to ask you. So she leaves the bedroom and heads to the kitchen to do some stress-cleaning. She is banging things around, trying to get you to notice her. Later, when you finally get to bed, you realize that she has been mad at you all this time. Forgive us women, we are not so good at mind-reading.

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