Dating Games Men Play

dating games men play

Looking back, I’ve noticed that I’ve written about a dozen or more blogs to shed light on how many men approach dating and mating.

Have you ever wondered about the dating games men play?

How could he disappear so quickly after he came on so strong?  Why hasn’t he called?  Was he just into the sex?  How could he not see how great we are together?  Why doesn’t he make a date? Why did he put his profile back up?  Will this man ever commit?  What the heck is going on with him? Is it him? Or is it me?

And we’re supposed to be the mysterious ones! Truth is, men are at least as hard to figure out as women. Their behavior can be confusing, frustrating and maddening. They tease us with clever poems, roses, daily texts and calls, only to turn around in the blink of an eye and completely disappear or disappoint us. Who hasn’t fallen for that grand opening dating game, where they lure us with intoxicating conversations, funny dates, a perfect little heart necklace, delicious kisses and more? Let’s talk about the dating games men play.

Fortunately, I’ve logged many therapy hours listening to men as they’ve opened up and explored their deepest needs and fears.  Those private moments have given me a unique window into understanding the different types of dating games men play and their underlying motivation for playing.  In this blog, I will take you behind the scenes and share those intimacies with you.

Dating Games Men Play: The Good News

The good news is that they, like us, usually really do want true love, and down deep they realize that they’d be happier, more content and more sexually satisfied if they had a good relationship.  The bad news is they are also scared, and they push real intimacy or commitment away.  Men fear being overwhelmed and taken over in an all-consuming relationship. Believe it or not, they also fear rejection and abandonment.  And all these fears play out in a variety of ways.  The dating games men play are both unconscious and conscious games which create a maddening push-pull with your heart. That’s why dating them can be so confusing and frustrating.

Guy’s fears of being vulnerable, of being loved and loving, lead them to enact their dating games or patterns.  Like us, they have habitual ways of sabotaging themselves when it comes to romance and love.  Unfortunately, men often follow these same self-destructive dead-end patterns over and over again, sinking possibilities of love into the netherworld in the process.

Understanding the Games Men Play

Understanding dating patterns of the dating games men play can liberate us from these self-blaming thoughts.  Instead we can more easily say – and understand – that, “It is not just about me.  It’s about him and his issues.” We can view relationships in a more balanced way, examining more objectively who did what to whom.

In the very beginning of a relationship it may be very hard or even impossible to know for sure if a guy is caught in any one dating game.  Many of the dating games men play start out with a perfectly great opening phase.  This is another important reason why it is a powerful protective step for you to go on the Dating Program of Three.  If you see three guys at the same time and compare and contrast their styles, you will see their dating games more easily.  Plus by going slowly and avoiding sex with all of them, you will be able to see each one’s dating game emerge.

Love in 90 Days: A Guide to Understanding

So I want you to pick up a copy of my dating advice book, Love in 90 Days. By the time you finish the chapter on Men’s Dead-End Dating Patterns I hope you have many ‘Aha experiences. You will better understand and be clear about dating games men play.  Armed with this knowledge you can quickly get away from guys who are DUDs (Definitely Unworkable Dudes). Or relationships that are truly dead-end or even destructive.  You can see clearly when it is time to stay and work on the relationship or when it’s time to cut your losses and go. You can be freer to choose the ones you want, the ones who give you love that is just right for you.

In order to do that, I will arm you with the information you need about men and how to set the stage for commitment or when you need to cut him loose.


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Dr. Diana Kirschner

Diana Kirschner, Ph.D. is a relationship advice expert, frequent guest psychologist on The Today Show and the creator of a globally available dating coach and Love Mentor® program. Dr. Diana is also the best-selling author of the acclaimed best-selling relationship and dating book, “Love in 90 Days”. Love in 90 Days was the basis of her PBS Special on love. Connect with Dr. Diana through her Dating Tips & Relationship Advice Newsletter.

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  1. The Shepherd on September 26, 2010 at 11:06 am

    You should also point out how bad this behaviour is for men themselves. For decades I have criticized myself for not responding to a beautiful young girl’s advances at a bus stop. Why didn’t I respond to her? She was so beautiful that she could have gained absolute power over me and if I didn’t stack up, the rejection would have been devastating. I was terrified, so I walked away. I wonder if she ended up thinking her hips were too big (they were) or she was too tall (she was). None of her flaws mattered to me, it was her attractions that in my eyes were the threat. It wasn’t a game to me, just survival, and yes it was my loss.

  2. Pete on October 1, 2010 at 10:47 pm

    I’d suggest your readers pay heed to their own personalities rather than fitting into others.

  3. Ever on October 3, 2010 at 7:03 pm

    I agree 100% with Pete. Fix yourself first and the rest will fall into place. You really have to ask yourself the hard, sometimes painful questions. I will add When you care enough about yourself, you won’t allow these men/woman anywhere near you! You can walk away empowered and with a great friend, you.

  4. Slickinator on January 18, 2011 at 1:39 am

    i know i have lost many chances with women on many occasions as i am maybe one of the last good guys out there ,my problem is i am too good ,first off i am so scared of going too fast or forward that i tend to go at a crawl or make jokes about stuff too see if they twitch per say,and i know you will laugh but one thing that has me on a downside is before i do or try anything its like i need to hear a ok or basicly get permission to even hug or kiss ,a women friend of mine pointed out too me that some women like there boundrys pushed even a lil ,cause some will think they are not good enough if ur not even trying to get closer,its one of those things i guess u really have to feel the waters too know how too proceed and i need help in proceeding ,as most women can’t figure me out and think i am not interested because of how slow i am and even though i really am ,i guess i am like a deer caught in the headlights ,scared unsure of my self ,and i do admit i set myself up for a fall usually also as self esteem is low i have even told women they were too good for me as i seriously want them happy even if its not with me ,like i always say i make a better friend than a lover and have lots of friends as i help everyone ,and have great patiences and a open ear ,i do more counselling for others than my self ,talk about needing real help for me ,one thing is i would never ever hurt a women ,even if she was stabbing me i would not hit her i will try and run though ha ha thats how nice i am. anyways sorry for my mumbling i hope i kinda said who i am and how i am .is there help still for me ?

  5. Darrell on February 20, 2011 at 8:08 am

    In the beginning most men and women don’t look beyond the body language or chemistry that attracted them to each other in the first place and that just lasts so long.
    If they don’t have the same value system or beliefs there will usually be a problem down the line.
    Some couples, partners who have different goals can learn to respect each others differences or interests and outlooks but it’s hard to be with someone who is not as motivated as yourself to grow and that may hold you back or vice versa.
    On the other hand, it can make a good balance as long as your value system and beliefs are the same. I’ve been called a workaholic(in the art field) but it’s just that my mind is always working on creating new things and I can only sit around like a lump or “relax” for so long before I get ansy.
    I have nothing bad to say about any of the women I’ve been involved with over the years as I look at it as we all learned from each other and there was respect for each other.
    I wasn’t right and they weren’t wrong and vice versa …we just had different outlooks.
    I agree with the previous comments left here by the others and probably agree with Pete’s statement the most.
    …don’t just try and fit in for the sake of fitting in.
    …you may feel lonely at times but not empty.

  6. a guy on February 22, 2011 at 6:13 pm

    99% of men will use women for sex as their first intention, and have “relationship” in mind as a second intention, if it turns out they actually like the girl.

    The solution? Even if you don’t believe in Him, God’s principles do wonders for your life and well being. NO PREMARITAL SEX. How can you be used and then have a man disappear if you don’t screw him? hint: you can’t. If you’re not ****ing before marriage, the only ones that will stick are the ones who actually matter, and the trash will be gone fast (especially if you tell them directly: no sex before marriage).

  7. Marvin on October 6, 2011 at 2:08 pm

    I agree with the first commenter in the sense that if you adopt the philosophy of no premarital sex then you do eliminate 90% of the problem. The problem with that or should I say challenge is to find a man who shares that same value and philosophy.

    If your philosophy is not based on no premarital sex then a person needs a way of screening a person to discover what their deep intentions are in regards to a relationship with you in the short and long term

  8. Yafio on October 18, 2013 at 8:13 pm

    Dr. Diana Kirschner’s Dating Games Men Play sure bites on the behinds of men, like we are the root cause of all the women’s woes in this extraordinary game of love. ’cause that what it really is, a game! Most women have no conceptualization, nor an understanding of what love means in American society today, that goes for this good-intentioned doctor. The road to hades is littered with good intent, and to most women, love is a throw-way like an old toy, and Dr, Kirschner adds to this. She is just another expert who don’t know diddly-squat, and creates more problems then they are worth. Men need to be men. Nothing more, nothing less, and not some guinea-pigs in a therapy session. May God save us all, especially the children.

  9. Dr. Diana Kirschner on October 19, 2013 at 3:31 pm

    Appreciate your sharing your viewpoint. No I’m not a man hating b*#ch. Relationships are a two-way street. But some men really don’t want to commit or are just fearful. Then they act out in different ways. If you read my writings on women, you’ll know that women have loads of cognitive, emotional and spiritual issues. And those drive men away and create suffering. thanks, Dr. D

  10. M.O.G on November 5, 2013 at 7:15 pm

    There are many reasons men play games. I have spoken about this in great detail in my blog. Yes I agree abstinence should be a rule of thumb. Someone who is sex driven definitely won’t stick around for the wedding bells. That however is only the beginning. Just because you find out a man doesn’t seem to be only concerned with sex, doesn’t mean he is a good guy or healthy for you! You still need to weed out the good from the bad and there are a lot more games men play other then hit it and quit it! Read more ..

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