Your boyfriend may be emotionally manipulating you by playing mind games. In order to survive them, this LoveBondings article intends to help you understand the mind games men play in relationships.
I just want an honest relationship. No lies. No mind games. No cheating.
Is your boyfriend acting weird lately? Is he constantly finding faults with your dressing, behavior, Facebook posts, etc? Then this may be a sign that he is playing the ‘finding fault’ mind game with you. This will only make you feel self-conscious and insecure. You will start believing that you do not deserve such a ‘nice’ guy, and wouldn’t want to lose him at any cost. This will make you cling on to him even more.
If you thought that only women were good at playing mind games, you are completely mistaken. Men play on the insecurities and emotional involvement of women, and manipulate them to have their way. Some love to play mind games on women to test their patience, intelligence, compatibility, loyalty, etc. They tend to exploit the emotional nature of women and use it for their own advantage.
How you react to your partner’s mind games helps him decide the future of your relationship. You must know when he is playing a mind game with you, so that you can act wisely and refrain from taking any drastic step which will ruin your relationship.
Types of Mind Games Played By Men
The ‘You Are the Love of My Life’ Game
This is exactly what whirlwind romances are made of-emotional manipulation. The man you have just met will shower you with lots of attention, compliments, gifts, etc. He will say that you mean the world to him, and will wonder why you hadn’t met him earlier. There will be butterflies in your stomach, stolen kisses, late-night texts and talks. You may even find surprise flowers and chocolates delivered at your doorstep. Like always, you will think that he is your ‘Mr. Right’. Then you will take the relationship to the next level. This excitement will continue for a month, and after reaching the ‘break-even point’, he will say that he wants to take things slow. The contact may become lesser and lesser, until one day, when there will be nothing left with you but memories.
- Manipulation: He will try to portray that everything is perfect, and you mean a lot to him, only to leave you for someone else. And you will keep wondering what exactly went wrong.
- Surviving the Game: The Mills and Boon kind of romance only happens in Mills and Boon. Getting attached too soon will not be good for you at all. So, take some time to think if this relationship is merely an attraction or true love, before your’re heartbroken.
The ‘Convenience’ Game
So, you and your boyfriend have a strange relationship. He breaks your heart and walks away, only to appear after a few days and apologize for his behavior. Guess what, history repeats itself, and he leaves once again. Every time he comes back into your life, he has his own reasons. Sometimes, its work, sometimes, his friends keep him busy, and then there are always some duties that he is expected to do at home. He may even give you lame reasons that his great-great-grandmother expired, and he needed to be by his great-great-grandpa’s side. That is why he didn’t show up for six months. The reasons keep on getting bizarre, so much so, that you wonder if he owns an encyclopedia on excuses. This continues for some time, before you realize that you are being taken for a ride.
- Manipulation: He treats you as a matter of convenience. Whenever he wants, he comes into your life, and leaves you as he pleases.
- Surviving the Game: Are you really that naive? He is giving you all kinds of lame reasons, and you are buying them! Understand that you have to leave him, just as he left you twice. Simply find someone else; there are plenty of fish in the ocean.
The ‘No Sex’ Game
So, the guy who could not keep his hands off you is showing no interest in getting intimate lately. Strange, isn’t it? I know how worried you must be because of this. You must be killing yourself with thoughts like, ‘has he found someone else?’, ‘is something wrong with me?’, or ‘has something gone wrong with our relationship?’. However, you need to understand that he does this, so that you will start doubting your capacity in the art of lovemaking. You will be forced to confront him, and this is all that he wants you to do.
- Manipulation: He does this so that he can ‘tell’ you what he expects from you during physical intimacy, without sounding too demanding.
- Surviving the Game: There is no problem in asking him what he expects from you. However, don’t get into a physical act which you may not be comfortable with, just because it pleases him.
The ‘Comparison’ Game
This is perhaps the worst game ever, because it will hurt your self-esteem. If your boyfriend is comparing you with any other girl, it will affect you terribly. It will only add insult to injury, if that girl is someone close to you, like your best friend or sister. He will tell you to go to the gym just like her, become smart like she is, how attractive she is, etc. He is probably well aware that this will cause feelings of jealousy and anger in you. Even then, he will continue to compare your looks, figure, fitness, style, etc., with that other woman.
- Manipulation: By making you question everything about your appearance and existence, he tries to bring your self-esteem down.
- Surviving the Game: First of all, don’t see his criticism in negative light. Maybe he really does want you to improve. However, tell him that you will accept constructive criticism, but you cannot stand comparison, as you take immense pride in your individuality. However, if he is being unreasonable, tell him that you cannot change any further. Try not to say anything negative to him in a fit of anger, as he may use it against you in a future argument.
The ‘No Compliment’ Game
You went to a salon and got all decked up specially for him, since you wanted to look beautiful for him. The whole evening passed by, and he didn’t even pay you a single compliment. You are waiting to hear simple words of praise from him. He talks about everything else under the sun, but fails to notice your stunning looks. Your anger is reaching its boiling point, as you wait for him to give you a small compliment. You even indulge in some compliment-fishing by stroking your hair or batting your eyelashes, but to no avail. He drops you back at your place, and leaves without saying a single word about how stunning you looked that evening.
- Manipulation: He is purposely not paying a compliment, even though he knows that it is all that you want to hear from him.
- Surviving the Game: Try not to overreact, because he may have done this to test your patience. If you throw a tantrum, it will convince him that you are a difficult person to get along with. Play along. The next time you meet him, ask him if he noticed you the other day. However, don’t say it angrily, rather, put it across subtly.
The ‘Ignorance’ Game
You wait for his call or message, but it is as if he has vanished into thin air. You see that he is active on Facebook, but still not replying to your messages. You try to call him, but he doesn’t answer your calls. You keep on wondering if you did something wrong to hurt him on the last date. These thoughts start disturbing you, and you desperately look for answers. You imagine that he has found someone else, or he does not think you are attractive enough. You are deeply hurt by his behavior, and so you send him one last nasty text, telling him why he doesn’t deserve you anyway. This seals the deal of your breakup.
- Manipulation: He knows very well that you will get a panic attack when something like this happens. Still, he wants to wait and watch the fun.
- Surviving the Game: While he may be genuinely busy, overreacting to this situation can seriously backfire on your relationship. Patience is the key to surviving this mind game. Do not be in a haste to jump to conclusions or accuse him of anything. Get all the facts right before taking any decision.
The ‘I Need Space’ Game
‘I need space’, is perhaps words that are dreaded by all girlfriends, because they are well aware what it leads to. Boyfriends use this phrase when they feel claustrophobic in their relationship, or need a change. However, women become restless and anxious, as they know that it would, in most cases, lead to a breakup. So, they start wondering what went wrong, or what was it that would have changed the scenario.
- Manipulation: Guys know very well that when they use this phrase, you will feel the need to be with them even more.
- Surviving the Game: Try to give him the space he needs. This will also tell him that you can survive easily without this relationship. Even after giving him space for a considerable number of days, if he doesn’t turn up, confront him about your relationship status. This conversation can be a maker or breaker, so watch your words carefully.
The ‘My Friends Don’t Like You’ Game
I guess most girls must have had such boyfriends at some point in time, who claimed that their friends didn’t approve of their relationship. Many guys try to create a rift between their friends and girlfriends, by telling both the parties stories about possessiveness of the other person. This creates resentment and anger between both, their girlfriends and friends. They start hating each other, and the boyfriend only keeps adding fuel to the fire.
- Manipulation: He will love to sit back and watch the fun of the tug-of-war over him, between his girlfriend and friends.
- Surviving the Game: Don’t give him a chance to manipulate you in this fashion. Right from the beginning, have cordial relations with his friends. Make them your friends. In fact, you should be so friendly, that if a dispute occurs between your beau and yourself, they will take your side. Even if there are misunderstandings between you and his friends, you can take the initiative to bury the hatchet.
The ‘Lying’ Game
So, you meet this wonderful person on Facebook, and you chatted with him day and night. Both of you start feeling that you have met your soulmates. He tells you that he is into finance. You decide to meet up, and the date goes very well. You both get involved in a strong relationship. Only a few days later, you find out from a third person that he has lied to you about his career, and actually owns a store. While his career choice would have hardly mattered to you, his lying will make you wonder if he is a genuine person. As trust is often compared with paper, which once crumpled cannot be straightened, you will not be able to get along with this person.
- Manipulation: He is lying about being someone else or having some qualities, only to impress you.
- Surviving the Game: If you are dating a person who is making tall claims about his career and lifestyle, it is advisable that you investigate what he says holds true. This will only help you avoid a terrible heartache in future.
A point to note is that, not all men are like this. Nevertheless, apart from the ones mentioned above, there are also the ‘getting secretive’ game, ‘getting aggressive’ game, ‘making feel guilty game’, ‘commitment phobia’ game, ‘cheating because I love you’ game, ‘silent treatment’ game, etc. Men play mind games with women even in the simplest of ways. But, now that you understand the mind games men play in relationships, you will be able to recognize them instantly, and cope with them in a better manner. Not only that, you will be able to ‘checkmate’ them even before they start playing complicated mind games with you. Take care!