4 dangerous dating games you shouldn’t play
Dating games may help you be successful in securing dates, there are some that are actually dangerous and can not be deployed without the risk of seriously hurting someone else’s feelings.
1. Exploitation of weakness
In any game of strategy the way to win is to identify the opponent’s weaknesses and exploit them. In personal relationships this can take many forms. Often what is exploited is someone’s vulnerability or neediness. A predatory dater could be on the lookout for people who are naive, vulnerable, lonely or isolated and attempt to develop a sexual relationship with no intention of making a commitment. On the other hand someone may look for a person with lots of money and feign affection to exploit their wealth.
Whatever the situation what is missing is a regard for the needs and interests of the other person – the one who is game playing is only interested in their own needs and will care little for the damage they do to the other person when they no longer want them. This is a very dangerous game and one that can do serious long term emotional damage as the victim’s trust will be broken – the better the player the more damage is done.
Often people play this game because they are afraid of being vulnerable themselves and mistakenly believe they will only get their needs met through dominating or manipulating another person. Until they stop the game they will always be the losers because they won’t ever know what it is like to love and care for someone else.
This is a handy and useful tactic in a game of poker but bluffing has no part to play when it comes to dating. Stringing someone along because you have nothing better going on; allowing them to think your feelings for them are deeper than they are; using them to get back at your ex or because you can’t bear to be without a date on a Saturday night are all bad tactics. Unless you are being upfront about what it is you are doing then you are bluffing and using them and it will eventually backfire on you.
As frightening as it may be to be on your own and face your feelings of loneliness it is better than living a lie. Any relationship based on deceit will eventually crumble and is likely to do harm to both parties as well as stopping them moving on to healthier relationships.
3. A numbers game
Online dating means that you have the potential to meet many matches – like fishing in the sea rather than in the little pond that might be your hometown or workplace. It is generally accepted that people will be chatting with more than one match at a time and may even be dating several people at once. This is absolutely fine as long as you are open and upfront about it. Most people will continue in this way until they meet someone they really connect with and after a few dates they become exclusive, letting the others down gently.
This only becomes a dangerous dating game if you are not honest and are pretending you are seeing someone exclusively while still meeting other people behind their back. You may think you are being smart because you are upping the odds of getting a real catch but if your dating strategy is based on dishonesty then the chances are that you will never land a winner.
4. Playing online
It is now generally accepted that internet use can become highly addictive, more so now that most people have smart phones and can access their messages any time, any place and any where. Every time we see the little symbol or light that indicates a new message a little bit of serotonin is released in the brain making us feel good. Some people get so hooked on this that they spend the majority of their time in front of the computer communicating with matches but hardly any meeting anyone in person. This can damage you confidence and your interpersonal skills so unless you want your primary relationship to be with your computer then you need to build relationships face to face – virtual love is a poor substitute for the real thing.
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