Last Updated on October 6, 2021 by Alexander Burgemeester
Today’s dating scene is filled with app-based dating profiles, left and right swipes, and endless open liners. Even if you consider yourself to be a catch in terms of looks, personality, and more it can still be hard to read the signs when someone likes you.
When it comes down to conventional dating, you typically find that the woman plays hard to get while the man does everything in his power to woo her. You’ll find this popular trope in some of the highest-grossing romantic films.
With her constantly keeping the guy on his toes, it can be hard to discern if the girl is playing hard to get.
If you took someone special out on a date recently and are noticing that the texting between the two of you is falling flat, then you may be wondering what’s going on. This is especially confusing if you felt like the chemistry between the two of you was really in sync.
Knowing the difference between a girl who likes you and is just playing hard to get and one who is uninterested is key to saving yourself from overstepping and being labeled as ‘creepy’.
So is she playing hard to get by not texting back? Find out why she’s so aloof and what the signs that she likes you but is playing hard to get are.
Why Do Women Play Hard To Get?
Women aren’t as complicated as men might think. When trying to pick apart all of the mixed signals that she’s sending out, it’s important to understand that there are reasons as to why women play hard to get.
While some do this subconsciously without even realizing it, some do it on purpose with a specific intent behind their actions. While there’s no way to know for certain why exactly a woman is being indirect about her feelings, here are some possible reasons.
1. She’s taking time to observe your intentions
Many times, when a woman is playing hard to get it’s because she’s taking time out to see what your intentions truly are. The unfortunate reality of dating is that not everyone you meet is being transparent about what they’re looking for.
Many women who are looking for a serious relationship want to avoid being with a guy who is only interested in their body. To weed out the men who are interested in something purely physical, she may pull away a bit to see how you react.
2. She’s casually dating and keeping her options open
These days, we have more options than we might know what to do with. The same goes with dating, as more of us are choosing to date many people on more casual terms. There’s nothing wrong with dating a few people to see who you have the best chemistry with.
After all, no one wants to make the wrong decision and wind up in a relationship that they ultimately regret later on. If you notice that she’s not responding as quickly, then she may be keeping her options open and exploring.
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3. She wants to be viewed as a high-value girl
Despite all that the feminist movement has done to help liberate women from outdated ways of thinking, there are still certain opinions that people hold. Since a lot of people love to gossip and some men even like to keep a score of the number of women they’ve slept with, some girls end up having extra reservations.
Because of this, she may not put herself out there as much as not to be perceived as “easy”.
4. She enjoys feeling in control
Some girls prefer to be in the driver’s seat of their relationships. This is especially true if she’s more dominant and headstrong.
Playing hard to get allows her to feel powerful, especially if she sees that it’s making you work harder. In the end, it might make her feel good to know that she has you wrapped around her finger.
5. She’s been hurt before and is trying to avoid that
The pain of a broken heart is enough to keep you on your guard when the next person shows up. Some women have had terrible experiences with an ex-boyfriend or have been dumped after just a few hopeful dates.
Since some guy’s prerogative is to just get with a girl or can’t offer up a true investment in their relationships, some women like to ensure that you are incredibly interested in them before letting their guard down.
Once she knows that your intentions are sincere, if she really likes you then she’ll begin to warm up to you.
6. Because it works
Another reason she’s got her guard up is that it works to attract you. Studies have shown that subjects were more attracted to potential romantic partners who were withdrawn and hard to read as opposed to ones that were straightforward about their attraction.
Uncertainty can be incredibly enticing and if she knows this then she’s possibly using it to her advantage.
10 Signs She Is Playing Hard To Get By Not Texting Back
Now that you have a better idea of why some women play hard to get, it’s important to be able to differentiate between a woman that likes you and one that is disinterested. It can be embarrassing to read the situation wrong and get rejected after putting yourself out there.
That’s why we’ve put together some of the top signs she is playing hard to get. Look out for these signs and you’ll be able to tell if you should start planning your next date or if you should just give up entirely.
1. She takes a while to respond to your texts but she always manages to respond
One of the key ways to keep a guy on his toes is to make him wait for a response. If she’s taking her sweet time replying to a text you sent, don’t worry. That doesn’t necessarily mean that she’s not interested.
Instead, pay attention to whether or not she answers you at all. If she takes a while to respond but seems enthusiastic when she finally does that’s a good sign. More likely than not, she’s trying to play it cool and doesn’t want to appear desperate for your attention.
But how long is too long? If she responds after a few hours then that’s still a good sign, however, if it’s verging on days when she’s more than likely not into you.
2. You can’t seem to read her feelings for you, but her friends happen to know all about you
If you’re still wondering, “Is she playing hard to get?”, then pay attention to how her friends react to you. For starters, if she’s taken the time out to introduce you to her friends then that’s typically a pretty good sign.
We don’t usually introduce someone to our social groups unless we believe that they will be around for longer than a quick hookup.
When she introduces you to her friends, pay attention to how they talk about you. Do they make hints that she’s interested?
Do they say that she can’t stop talking about you? If they happen to know little facts about you that you’ve only ever mentioned to her, then it may be fair to assume that she’s interested.
3. She makes eye contact with you whenever you’re together
Eye contact is one of the first ways that we establish intimacy with another person. After all, it can feel incredibly disarming to look someone directly in the eyes. However, paying attention to this can give you a better indication of what her feelings are for you.
If you notice that she’s holding her gaze with you, then she’s likely interested and may even want you to make a move on her. The trick is to notice if this happens repeatedly. Prolonged eye contact on several occasions is hinting that she likes you.
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4. She’s affectionate
Anyone who has a tough time making sense of more subtle body cues will find this one easy to read. When someone is into it, they make an effort to be kind and affectionate with you.
This is especially true if the person has a romantic interest. When a girl likes you, she’ll be quite sweet with you. Simple things like rubbing your arm when you’re sitting across the table from her or moving in closer for a hug are indicators that her lack of texting is just a mask for her true feelings.
5. She flirts back with you
When you send her a flirty text how does she usually respond? Does she send back a winky face or does she immediately shut down the conversation? Being flirty is one of the fun parts of getting to know someone in the initial stages of courting.
Pay attention to the way she responds to you directly flirting with her. If she flirts back that’s a good sign that she’s interested, but if she changes the subject then her lack of communication could mean she’s ultimately not interested.
6. She makes the effort to dress up when you go out together
While many of us groom ourselves when we know we’re going out, we don’t always go above and beyond for just anyone or any event. Pay attention to the way she looks and how she dresses when you have plans to go out together.
If she usually wears her hair in a ponytail or a braid when she’s out and about but decided to wear her hair down on your date then she’s looking to present herself well in front of you.
Another one to pay attention to is if she usually sports a bare face but on your night’s out she decides to wear makeup. These are all small but important indicators of how she feels about you and how she wants to be perceived by you. If she wasn’t into you, she would do the bare minimum in terms of her appearance.
7. She laughs at your jokes – even when they’re corny
Unless you happen to be a stand-up comedian, you know that all of your jokes won’t be home runs. Even if you are a pretty funny guy, you know when your jokes aren’t that good. If she’s always laughing at your jokes, even the really bad ones, then it’s a good sign that she likes you but is playing hard to get.
8. She just so happens to be at all the same events and places as you
Did you just so happen to mention an amazing free concert that you were planning to go to and notice that she’s in the crowd? That could mean that she’s into you or it could mean that she wanted to see the band that was performing.
However, if you happen to mention a bar that you love to grab drinks at and a restaurant whose food you’re always getting and she happens to be there too then you can bet that she’s into you. By showing up to places she knows you’ll be, she’s finding ways to be in contact with you and stay on your mind.
9. She finds ways to be next to you
Women are not going to find excuses to get close to a man that they’re not at all interested in. For this tip, pay attention to how close you are when you’re together. Even if she does simple acts like touching your arm or playing with your hair, that’s a pretty good sign that she’s interested.
So even if she’s not texting back, her body language will give away her true feelings without her even realizing it. We often use our bodies as a flirtation device, so body language is key to deciphering mixed signals.
10. She opens up to you about herself and her life
Some women are easy to read, while others are an absolute enigma. You’ll usually find that women who are playing hard to get are harder to get to open up.
So if you notice that she seems like a mystery but is willing to let you know about different aspects of her life, like her first dog’s name and her silliest embarrassing moment, then that’s another confirmation that she likes you but is just playing hard to get.
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What should you do when a girl plays hard to get?
Now that we’ve gone over how to tell if she’s playing hard to get, you may be wondering what steps you should take to avoid being placed in the friend zone. It can be frustrating when you believe that you’ve done all the right things but she’s still indirect about her feelings.
It’s normal to have feelings of self-doubt when you feel like your attempts at getting to know her are rejected.
After going through the list and feeling confident that she’s just playing hard to get, having a plan is necessary. Making sure to make her feel comfortable and safe while you move forward will help to melt her icy exterior. Let’s go over all the way you can overcome a girl who is playing games and not being direct:
1. Make sure she’s actually playing hard to get and isn’t just busy
After reading through the signs of a woman playing hard to get, this one might seem obvious. However, we’re all human and aren’t always able to discern every situation flawlessly. Before you start making some moves to get closer to her, make sure she’s not just unavailable.
These days, women are incredibly ambitious with big goals they’re hoping to achieve.
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When you invite her out or text her and she isn’t always responsive, it may be because she’s genuinely busy with work, errands, or even personal things. That doesn’t mean that she doesn’t you and doesn’t want to spend time with you.
Instead, be sure to keep this in mind when you reach out and be patient. Over time, you’ll be able to tell if she’s truly busy as she’ll make the effort to see you.
2. Make your efforts apparent
When a girl is playing hard to get, it’s usually because she wants to see how much effort you’re willing to put in. So when you’re in the beginning stages of dating, be sure to sure her that you’re willing to make the effort.
If you’d like to take her out on Friday night, don’t wait until the morning of the day to make plans with her. Oftentimes, when a girl wants to see if you really like her, she may not even accept a last-minute invitation to not appear desperate. So let her know that you’re truly interested through making the extra effort with your dates.
3. Don’t be afraid to play hard to get too
Two can play hard to get and this is another tactic that you can easily employ. For this to be effective, you can’t start off by putting in zero effort. Be sure to text her, call her, and reach out about setting up a date.
However, if she’s still being aloof, start to lessen the amount of attention you give her. This may make her feel like she’s losing you and she’ll start to reach out to you more.
4. If you matched on a dating app, don’t be afraid to call and get her on the phone
Hearing someone’s voice and having them reach out to you through a call is a great way to establish intimacy and get her to trust you more. If she’s not always responding to texts but she seems like she’s into you, then she may also not be the best at texting.
Not everyone enjoys writing out paragraphs or keeping small talk going.
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Those who take risks get rewarded. That’s why although it might seem intimidating to get her on the phone, it may be the perfect way to get the situation between the two of you moving forward.
Also, hearing someone’s voice and the way they communicate can give you a better idea of who they are and what they like. You may quickly realize that the two of you don’t even click after a simple phone call. So be charming and brave and get the girl on the phone with you.
5. Gracefully ask her about her feelings
Sometimes, the best thing you can do is be direct with someone. After all, playing the guessing game can become incredibly frustrating and confusing. If you’re tired of trying to figure out what her feelings are for you, then why not just ask her directly?
There’s nothing wrong with saying, “Where do you see this going?” This may throw her off her game for a second, as she may not have realized how aloof she has been.
Along with that, asking her directly also shows that you’re determined to define things between the two of you. Either way, getting a straight answer will help you either move on or keep the spark going between the two of you.
The trick with asking this question is to pick the right time. We don’t recommend asking this while you’re in the middle of a romantic dinner. Instead, find a private space where you can have an intimate conversation. However, if you still haven’t gone out yet then texting this can work as well.
Is she playing hard to get or is she not interested?
Playing hard to get is an age-old tactic that women have used to try and attract the guy that they’re interested in. However, sometimes the cold hard truth is that she’s just not that into you.
If you’ve read through the list and are still unsure of where you stand with this girl, then you’ll need to know the signs of someone who is truly uninterested in you. Pay attention to these signs as they will help you mitigate this turbulent situation and let you know whether your efforts are going to waste.
Being left in a state of limbo can be frustrating and if she’s truly not interested in dating you, then it’s better to cut your losses as soon as you can. After all, wasting time and energy on a person who has no plans on reciprocating that same energy can leave you feeling drained and filled with self-doubt.
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1. She’s busy every time you try to make plans
A girl who’s playing hard to get will try to appear as though she has an incredibly busy social calendar. After all, she wants to come off as someone well-liked and constantly being invited out. However, she’ll eventually make time to see you.
A girl who is entirely uninterested in you will always be busy for you. Anytime you ask her out or try to make plans she hits you with the, “I can’t. I have plans.” Now, every person can be busy and it’s normal to have other plans.
However, if this happens every single time that you attempt to set up a date, then she’s avoiding you because the truth is that she’s not interested.
2. She always replies to your texts with one-word answers
Does this conversation feel familiar to you?
You: Hey, how are you?
You: How has your day been?
You: Good, just worked.
If these are the most common conversations happening between the two of you, then that’s unfortunately a red flag. Someone interested in getting to know you will want to have a conversation.
They’ll want to fill you in on the details of their day and in return they’ll also want to know how your day went as well. When someone replies with one-word answers, they’re not giving you anything to work with.
The conversation can’t pivot into something deeper and you wind up carrying the whole thing on your back. At this point, her lack of enthusiasm when texting is a clear indicator that you should begin pulling away.
3. She rarely, if ever, initiates plans with you
As the weekend inches closer, who’s the one usually reaching out to make plans? Is it always you or does she also make the effort to set up a date night? If the only person reaching out is yourself, then it’s clear that she doesn’t want to go out with you.
Mutual interest typically breeds mutual effort and that should be the case with a girl even if she’s playing hard to get. Not taking the time out to plan out a date or even see if you would be interested in going out shows that she’s not exactly as excited about this connection as you might be. At this point, we recommend retreating and trying with someone new.
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4. You still know barely anything about her, no matter how many times you’ve hung out
You’ve managed to hang out with her a few times now and you’ve let her know about your childhood camp experiences, your funniest embarrassing moment, and your favorite color.
You go back home after your last date and think to yourself, “Do I know anything about her?” If you still don’t know basic things about her after a few dates, such as her birthday, how many siblings she has, or what her favorite color is then she may be holding back on purpose.
While it’s both normal and expected to feel guarded when you’re first dating someone, after a few dates with getting to know them most people begin to lower down their walls and defenses.
That’s especially true if they’re looking to become more romantically involved. If she’s still an entire mystery to you after several dates, then she may be withholding because she doesn’t see a real future with you.
5. She bails last minute and is flaky when it comes to confirming any plans
When you reach out to her to set up your next date, how does she usually respond? Does she seem excited and like she can’t wait? Or is her response entirely underwhelming?
On top of that, once you’ve been able to get her to confirm, does she also bail at the very last minute? Canceling on your plans 30 minutes before you’re meant to show up is a pretty good sign that she’s keeping her options open and isn’t that enthused about meeting with you.
6. She stands you up on dates
Being stood up for a date is one of the worst feelings. It should also go without saying that anyone who would stand you up is likely not someone who is taking your feelings into serious consideration.
If you happen to have made plans with her for coffee on Friday afternoon and then she never shows up or gives you a call to let you know that she can’t make it – that’s a clear sign of disinterest.
Life happens and there are times when we agree to plans and can’t make it. Letting you know ahead of time or even acknowledging that she may be late is a sign that she’s still interested and her plans got thrown for a loop.
However, a complete no-show without even a text or a call is her way of saying, “I’m too indifferent towards you to bother keeping you up to date on what’s going on.”
7. She keeps referring to you as her friend
Another hint that will give you an idea of her feelings is paying attention to how she refers to you. Is she constantly saying that you’re “her friend” and that’s she happy to have “such a great friend” in you?
Reinforcing the term “friend” is a way for her to let you know where you stand in her life. Friendships are amazing and a great friend is hard to come by. If you’re happy with just being friends, then continue to strengthen that bond. However, if you’re looking for more, then being honest about it is your best bet. Of course, be sure to accept whatever decision she makes as well.
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