It seems that girls have rules for every dating act there is: how to speak to a man, show interest, accept dating offers, show affection, put out, etc. How did it get to this point? I believe many American women have a hard time acting genuine around men because they have modified their personalities with behavior they see in celebrities and television, and things they’ve read in pop psychology and relationship books, which combined is a powerful cultural force that your typical American girl can not ignore.

At some point in an American girls life, usually late in college or immediately after, there is one guy who demolishes her heart. He stomps on it while she watches, right before he starts making out with another girl. She liked him a lot but he didn’t reciprocate for whatever reason. Her friends – who have most likely never had a meaningful relationship in their lives – start giving her “advice” on how to hook guys in the future. Don’t seem desperate. Show less interest. Don’t call back right away. Don’t put out until the eighth date. She takes this advice seriously, and supplements it with The Rules readings and Sex and the City viewing marathons. She ends up worshipping a show that features old women who are absolute failures at having a fulfilling relationship, but who have the ever-so-useful skill of analyzing every minute behavior that a guy could possibly do.

Instead of accepting that rejection is a part of life – where you will get burned repeatedly – and forging ahead with a natural attitude, the American girl overcompensates and incorporates a ridiculous game that is just an elaborate defense mechanism against getting hurt. She turns herself from a vulnerable, real woman into a cold, aloof spinster who no guy could possibly take seriously. There is no reversing the corruption of the American female after this brainwashing, and she will forever be tainted in the eyes of an honest, genuine man.

The same man who would have found her normal self to be quite charming and relationship-worthy is extremely disturbed that this pretty girl plays the game so hard. Because there is no guy out there who wants to settle down with a girl who is usually “busy”, detached, and so easily influenced by fictional TV shows, he puts up with her cold gaming long enough to get that notch on his bedpost. How amusingly ironic that a girl who is scared of getting pumped and dumped takes on a game and attitude that causes guys to pump and dump her even more. It may take a lifetime for her to understand that most men simply want a cute girl who treats him well.

The American girl blazes through her 20’s spending all her money on clothes and alcohol, meeting guys at happy hours and bump n’ grind nights at the club. Each year her game gets “better” until the point where she can date multiple guys at once while being completely unhappy at the same time. Her 30’s arrive and the nagging from her mother to find a man can no longer be ignored. During the ensuing panic her guard lowers enough to deceive a desperate guy that she will actually make a good wife. The guy makes the biggest mistake of his life by marrying damaged goods, saying hello to a miserable suburban existence with a woman who is incapable of happiness, while saying goodbye to oral sex forever.


  1. luckyspinster

    fabulous and thoroughly depressing.

    but you can’t just blame the women in dc for the sad state of dating. true, the women who play games are usually angry, passive-aggressive, self-loathing, and/or depressed. but the men tend to be fronting as players, all worried about when a girl’s gonna put out. and since both men and women tend to be equal intimacy phobes, the relationship-sabotaging behaviors continue.

    i think the bottom line is, there’s usually only one person out there who you’re gonna wanna hook up with long-term–everyone else ’til then is just a glorified FB. nothing wrong with F-buds, but you’re doomed the second you try to fool yourself into thinking every potential mate is relationship-material if you could just get the rules of the game right. the only chance you’ve got at making a worthwhile connection is to behave authentically. which means giving a damn and not being too chicken to show you give said damn. male or female.

    btw, not all spinsters are cold and aloof. 😉

  2. Moxie

    “DCB?I have said it once and I will say it again. I do not believe that you like women very much. I think your comments about women are exaggerated and often times mean. Women are much more complex than how you describe us?not to mention smarter. Yes, some women play games but not all of us. You are obviously attracting these women because you too have issues with yourself.”

    Well, I’m a woman and I completely agree with DCB’s post. Yes, women are smart and complex…which lends to females being calculating and cunning. Yes, guy play games….but women play them a hell of a lot more often. Women think ten steps ahead and men don’t. Men think in terms of immediacy. The focus on what’s in front of them and going on in the moment. Women think about “the future” which often leads them to overlook what’s going on in the now. And women? Are more likely to lack accurate self-awareness. At least men know when they’re batting otu fo their league.

    As far as SATC….entertaining? Yes. Educational? Fuck no. It’s destroyed women. Everyone keeps tryign to emulate these women and seem to overlook the fact that they were all self-obsessed emotional cripples who walked aroudn thinkign the world owed them a boyfriend.


  3. Annie

    A man with class wouldn’t make out with another girl in front of you. That is hurtful and not neccessary. A player knows how to play his cards – when he is with you, he is with you. As a girl who has a positive attitude about life and really justs wants to have a good time – I am shocked and amazed by the ruthless and hurtful manner some men (and women) have treated others. Why bring such negativity to any situtation. I just don’t understand – it really makes me sad.

  4. Berry-licious

    DCB – finally made my way to your site and love the postings. More great reads to get me through the work day.

    “The American girl blazes through her 20?s spending all her money on clothes and alcohol, meeting guys at happy hours and bump n? grind nights at the club. Each year her game gets ?better? until the point where she can date multiple guys at once while being completely unhappy at the same time. Her 30?s arrive and the nagging from her mother to find a man can no longer be ignored.”
    Agreed (for the most part). Underneath all those hooched-up 20 somethings bump’n and grind’n, you’ve hit the nail on the head and we women know it too. When the smoke clears and we give it some thought it just makes us more depressed and sends us on our way to spend more money on clothes and booze in hopes of making us feel better. Yes we women play games, over analyze and ruin potentially good relationships. But men do it too. And we’ve all been doing it long before SATC.

  5. galgani

    Honestly, I have not seen one point which talks about why us women really play this game. I think it’s our reaction to what men expect! If we don’t ‘play the game’ men find us unchallenging (and I’m not talking about putting out!). If a girl is too nice, no matter how gorgeous she is.. the guys in d.c. become uninterested. It seems that they all (yes, I’m stereotyping!) they ALL want to have this woman who is on a pedestal; and somehow unattainable. Why this is, I don’t know. But!
    Our conditioning as women living here (and I’ve lived other places) is to play this game of indifference! The more distant a woman is, the harder the man will chase her. It guarantees unhappiness, because the woman is never really allowed to ‘open up’ and have deep emotions which allow a connection to the man, and the man will live in misery constantly trying to sustain her attention.

    I would really like to know why this is.

  6. Clutch

    As my uncle always says “the reason women are crazy is because the exhaust was put too close to the intake.” The real problem is that men can’t say what they want. If we did we would come off looking like pigs or just looking stupid in general, and if a man shows his true feelings he runs the risk of ridicule. Women always say they want a sensitive man but women never say what they really mean anyway. Case in point: Man says “So-and-so are having a boys poker night Friday, I’m meeting them over there at 6pm.” Woman Says “That So-and-so, I don’t really like him, I thought we would go see a movie Friday.” Man says “I havn’t hung out with “the boys” in awhile and last time So-and-so had a get together we had already made plans for us to go out to dinner.” woman says (this is the key) “That’s fine, have a good time with “the boys”.” But what she really means is have a good time with the boys cause it’s gonna suck for you when you get home. If she doesn’t like your friend she feels you shouldn’t either and if you go out with him he is more important to you then her feelings are. She would NEVER come right out and say this but it is always implied in the tone and good luck with any sex for at least a few days after (oh and don’t forget the groveling). Women all seem to think we must have Dion Warwick and her Psycic friends network on speed dial because they expect us to know what they are thinking even when their words are completly to the contrary. It’s like when a girl wears clothing with all of her bits hanging out all over the place, she is saying to some one come and get it, but if it isn’t ment for you she will say “What are you looking at.” this is where I will say something to the effect of “your dressed like an ad for phone sex, what do you think I was lookin’ at” She then says “You’re a pig” and I will reply “You look like a 2 dollar hoe. What? You didn’t think any one would look. Are you stupid and a tramp?” on average our courtship ends at this point. Every so often this approach will get the girl but honestly it often ends badly. I say what I mean when I want to, if every one was honest about thier “feelings” there would rarely be any misunderstandings: Man “Hi, my name is so and so, I would like to have sex with you.” Woman ” You are not my type, I am dressed like a street walker in an attempt to hook up with some one who is.” Man “Do you have a friend who might be interested in me?” Woman ” My fat friend with a hair-lip will take anything she can get, do you have any real standards?” Man ” No, in fact I do not and would like it if you would introduce me to her so that I can have sex with her and never call her again.” woman “Hey fat friend with a hair lip this is So-and-so he would like to have sex with you and never have to call you again.” Fat friend with a hair lip says ” I have come to expect it. We will go back to my place and I will let you do whatever you want to me, I do however get easily attached and if I see you in public after tonight even though I know this is a one-night-stand, I will come up and cause a scene.” man says “OK let me get a drink first to take the edge off of your face.” Honesty that is all I ask for.

  7. always write

    Interesting observations, but definitely made by a man in his twenties. I can’t speak for all women, but having turned 30 a couple months ago and really felt the shift internally, I can say that today it’s so much LESS about playing games and getting married. After experiencing a broken heart and a couple bad relationships and some lousy dates and a few men who didn’t appreciate me when I treated them well, I have a more solid understanding of what makes me happy and what does not. And most importantly, I understand that being happy is more important than what a guy thinks of me or whether or not he wants to put a ring on my finger. (Hey, I’m only 30, “forever” still scares the crap out of me.)

    And any woman who uses SATC as her how-to guide deserves whatever romantic misfortunes befall her. That stuff is just bullshit.

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  9. psychmajor

    Interesting comments.

    But there is a more fundamental explanation of the “pump and dump” phenomenon that you’ve overlooked. It applies to both genders, and to those of every age and nationality. Such behaviors can be based on a defective or disordered orientation toward others acquired in childhood.

    When a child’s relationship with parents, or other authority figure, is corrupted, he or she responds to such shattering experience with a compensatory defense mechanism that is manifested in two ways. First, the grown child may become preoccupied with matters of appearance or grooming that intends to project the semblance that all is as balanced within as without.

    Second, he or she learns to separate sex from love. And this is the most profound damage ever done to them by abdicating or abusive parents. Because of the child’s damaging formative experiences, he or she is reluctant, perhaps unwittingly so, to ever place complete trust in another again.

    Here is the insidious aspect. As they develop, such persons often impose a template of defensive behavior on new relationships that do not pose them any threat. Those afflicted thus manifest distancing behaviors toward their newfound romantic partners, who are left baffled and disappointed, thinking that they themselves are somehow to blame. They are not.

    And thus proceeds a danse macabre whereby the afflcited and their partners act toward one another less with free will than in accord to textbook symptoms. Relationships fail; they try again. The cycle repeats itself, until the inability to trust becomes its own self-fulfilling prophecy.

    In lucid moments, the afflicted perceive their own loneliness, but justify it, lamenting that “you simply cannot find everything in one other person.” Such reasoning aims to excuse their tendency to objectify others sexually, but is actually the proof positive of their own internal rift.

    Those who suffer such disorders are often highly intelligent and very gifted individuals. Thus, so is their disorder in masking itself. Witness the account of “The Washingtonienne” as a tour de force example of this syndrome, and have some sympathy. For all their glibness, it is not a happy life that they lead.

  10. truth

    I have one comment to anonymous.you say girl’s deteriorate more so than men making them less sucessfull. Not below the waist. You should think about that before it’s to late, while your playing the “game.” No women or man really want’s to play with mush if they don’t already love you. No,in love with you.

  11. slickvguy


    If by some strange chance you ever read this thread agin, could you please e-mail me? I wanted to discuss (privately) something you wrote about. I would appreciate it. Thanks.

  12. Frederf

    I know I just called DCB ignorant in the last thread I replied to; it’s because his view was deemed completely whacko.

    Anyway, I completely agree with his original post. As a male, I don’t want to deal with a bureaucracy or some twisted logic puzzle. I want to enjoy a genuine human romantic interaction with you. Men have their own bureaucracy too, and they’re both dumb. Men don’t understand women because they live in their own world they create. An alternate reality.

    The truth is of course, nobody plays the game, the game plays you. The more successful a player you are (male or female) the more the game has you.

    Gee he has a dog and friends count on him and is from a close family… he must be a nice person. Why look for clues like it’s CSI? Just look to see how the person makes you feel.

  13. goodfemale

    You summed up my last roommate….however, in her defense, she got over this type of behavior in a year and now she’s finally settled down. And only 24 years old. There’s hope.

  14. AJ

    I’ve only read two posts, so I’m not exactly pulling from much context, but half the people who post need to understand the difference between arguing and debating, and when which is appropriate. Don’t argue on a blog, that gets you no where and it makes people angry; try debating. Work toward a synthesis of ideas; being abrasive is ignorant and it doesn’t help anyone who reads these posts.

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  16. AnnieFannie


    Pumped and dumped again
    Fresh Brazilian wax job too
    Time to suck it up

    Red lips ripe and full
    Swallow the one eyed monster
    Aarrrrd ooo thawk ike thith

  17. john

    well written and very true. Tv and pop culture, womens lib, The Book “The Rules”, Ophra Winfrey and other factors have made women act and undo positive relationships with men that can make a difference. American Women generally want a strong bread winner type of man, but even with that relationships of today have that short fuse that is normally 7 in 10 times lit by the woman, not the man to make the relationship..casual or exclusive go down the tubes. Keep in mind one area not discussed that men must look into…is the level of new age mumbo the woman is into, generally the least is the best..ie..yoga, kabballah… the more they are into these practices… the less focused they will be to apply the sprituality and any of the learning to their existing man they have. They normally use it in attracting another suitor over time. Todays woman is good either for a one nighter a weekender, and normally last in anything committed for under 2 yrs.

  18. Serge

    Interesting discussion. Guys/Girls you can’t classify women or man with one paragraph. One will get dumped for being too nice, another for being a bitch. You have to find the right person who likes you for the way you are. All girls/guys like to play games but when things get serious than you really see the truth.

    ==== It all starts with the game ====

  19. Anonymous

    If you want to find the name of this disorder, do research on narcissistic personality disorder or shy narcissistic personality disorder. This sounds like my life. I am the guy who married this woman. Someone who is incapable of ever being happy, and the only thing that makes her feel good is when she spends money, and who knows what else she is up to. What are you going to do though when you have kids. You are trapped. The only reason I won’t leave her is because this would be detrimental to my kids. I have to make this sacrifice for my kids.

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  21. Victoria

    Wow… this was a great post to read! im only 16 and have just been pumped and dumped and was searching for something to try to fix my problem or some help on how to avoid it and i happened to find you page and it helped out alot! thanks!

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