Is She Stringing Me Along?
You’re really into her, and you think she might be the one — exciting times! The bad news is she doesn’t seem to share your level of enthusiasm for the relationship. Time to ask yourself: is she stringing me along?
Old sitcoms and stereotypes like to paint men as creatures fearful of commitment. They act like men are constantly trying to avoid getting tied down in a relationship, while women wring their hands and cry over a man who won’t stay with her.
That stereotypes complete bull, and you know it. Anyone who’s tried dating — especially in this digital era — knows that getting anyone of any gender to commit can be a real challenge. People want to keep their options open, and they’re always wondering if there’s something better just around the corner.
After all, you can match with a ton of people on apps like Tinder, and who’s to say you’ve found the best one for you? There’s always someone new, someone better, someone who might be the perfect one.
With so many choices out there and a potential for something better to always come along, it’s unsurprising that commitment has become a challenge for many. The problem is that people don’t want to just wait for the right one. Instead, they stay in a relationship for the time being while waiting for something better to appear.
That leaves the other party in an unfortunate situation. If you’ve ever had to ask the question, “is she stringing me along,” then you understand just how painful this is.
It’s so common that people have even started naming the phenomenon. Have you ever heard of “bread-crumbing”? That’s when your partner only doles out miserable morsels of attention to you, just enough to keep you interested but not offering more commitment to your relationship.
They want to see you, but only on their terms. They’re not even entirely sure they want you, but they’d rather keep their options open. As such they try to keep you within their web, offering a few snatches of flirtation just to maintain this pseudo-connection.
To be honest, getting ghosted might be a lot easier than dealing with bread-crumbing.
So, how can you tell if you’re getting strung along? Here are a few notable signs to take note of.
If you have to ask, she probably is.
If the question “is she stringing me along,” has ever crossed mind, that’s a good sign that your gut is sensing something out of the ordinary. People like to talk about intuition, often times focused on women.
However, men have the same skill given that intuition is an innate to human nature. If you sense that something is off, you’ll notice it even if you can’t immediately verbalize it. You might not know what’s wrong, exactly, but you can feel it, hence this question.
The minute you start wondering if it’s all a game to her, you know that there’s something to worry about. Try to backtrack and think about all the times you’ve been together and how she interacts with you.
More importantly, remove those rose-colored glasses and really consider her actions.
She’s always on her phone, but is always late replying to you.
You notice she’s always texting and commenting on social media when you’re together. She’s always checking Instagram and Facebook while you wait for your appetizers.
Interestingly, she’s never prompt when responding to your texts. That’s a serious disconnect to take note of, right? She has her phone glued to her hand and she’s checking it constantly, but she won’t reply to you on time.
That might mean she’s seen your messages but don’t want to reply just yet. It’s very telling and let’s you know just how important — or unimportant — you are to her.
She never gives a straight answer to your invitations.
Committing to a plan is not in her wheelhouse. She prefers to keep things open-ended, because she isn’t sure she wants to spend time with you on a specific day.
Have you tried asking her to join you on your birthday, even though it’s a month away? Chances are, she’ll say something non-committal, promising to give you an answer at a later date.
That’s because she isn’t entirely sure she wants to be with you on that day, and therefore would rather not give a straight answer. If this happens once or twice, you can chalk it up to a complicated and busy schedule.
If it happens all the time, then that’s a red flat to take note of.
She doesn’t open up.
Are your conversations all shallow and focus mostly on pop culture and fun stuff you see on the news? Is she never willing to open up about her feelings? These are some signs that she’s not quite invested.
She doesn’t trust you quite yet. She doesn’t see you as a potential romantic partner, and can’t take being vulnerable with you.
She avoids revealing things that can put her in a bad light, no matter how small. Think about it. Do you really know anything about her? If your answer is no, there’s a very real chance that this entire thing is temporary for her and she’ll move on when she finds someone better.
She makes no effort to see you.
Here’s the thing: people are busy. It’s true that life happens and people have to deal with a bunch of things in their regular life. That means they can’t always join you at the drop of a hat.
However, some people will never make the effort to be with you. They find interacting with you a tolerable inconvenience at best, and will not jump through hurdles — no matter how small – just to enjoy your company.
If she finds every small hurdle a real hassle and won’t make an effort to meet up with you, chances are she’s not really invested and is stringing you along.
You’re always a back-up plan.
She never makes the first move, and will never text you to make plans. It is like you’re the only one who’s constantly initiating every meeting. She waits for your invite to decide if you’ll be meeting up, and doesn’t offer to go out with you for whatever reason.
With one exception: when she’s got no one else to go out with. Does she always invite you at the last minute? Let’s say her best friend’s wedding is tomorrow — something she has to have known about for a few months at least — is she texting you right now to be her date to the event?
You’re a back up, and that sucks. She never thinks of you first, and you’re never the priority. She only remembers you when things fall through and she needs someone to accompany her.
All your plans are built around what she wants.
Someone who’s stringing you along isn’t always a gold-digger. It’s not a given, and some women who do bread-crumbing aren’t really aware that they’re doing it to someone. They might just be averse to commitment, and there is no financial aspect to this issue.
However, it seems like you have to do what she wants every time you’re together. Want to watch a movie but she’s not interested? Find someone else because she’s suddenly busy and can’t go.
90% of the time, you do what she wants. You go to restaurants she’s interested in, attend shows she’d like to watch. You go out to run her errands. When you do suggest something you like but she’s not entirely into, she’ll find an excuse to not join you.
This is a definite red flag in any relationship.
She’ll go long stretches without contact, then will suddenly send a flirty text.
So, you’re in the dating stage. In the early periods, it’s very likely that you’ll go back and forth with the conversation if you’re really into each other. Some people who are too scared to break things off will resort to ghosting — a common feature of modern dating life.
However, someone who’s stringing you along won’t ghost you. They’ll just go for long stretches without texting you or contacting you. Then, just when you think she’s gone for good, she’ll text you with something vague and flirty to get you interested again.
It’s an annoying game that leaves you hanging. On one hand, she’s go for a long time without talking to you, but on the other hand, she’ll send an explicit text that let’s you know she’s interested. That’s a real challenge to deal with, especially if you’re averse to mind games in your dating life.
She’s very vague about your future together.
Committing to a relationship means you’re working towards a common future. You want to be together and you’re dedicated towards building a life that includes both of you. That’s what commitment means.
So, pay attention to how she talks about the future. Does she mention plans that involve you? Is she including you in her dreams? These are things that you don’t have to ask, but can gleam from regular conversations.
Some of these women will offer some crumbs of hope by talking about a vague future. They’ll say something about future plans, but will never have any details to offer when pressed.
Once you ask about something concrete, like moving in together or possibly getting married, they’ll try to worm their way out of the conversation and distract you by talking about something else.
Of course, if you’ve only know each other for a short period of time, this is to be expected. However, if you’ve been together for some time and are heavily invested in the relationship already, the lack of concrete plans for the future is a sure sign that she’s not really into you.
They prefer the status quo.
Let’s say you bring up the issue and straight up confront her about her behavior. How do you think she will respond?
Someone who just wants to string you along will brush you off and make it appear like you’re making a mountain out of a molehill. They might tell you that things are fine just the way they are.
She may even tell you that she’s happy with your current relationship, and that your questions are putting her off. This is a means to get you off her back and to stop you from inquiring any further.
It lets her shift the blame to you and erases her own culpability. Now it’s your problem, and she’s the one who’s victimized by your neediness and clingy behavior.
You are then left questioning yourself, wondering if it’s you who’s causing the problem in this relationship. It’s a common tactic for manipulative people to use, and one you should be aware of.
So, if you’ve figured out the answer to “is she stringing me along,” is yes, what can you do? There are several options, but you have to be ready to handle things in an emotionally mature way.
Nobody deserves bread-crumbing, and you need to get out once you realize that this is the situation you’re trapped in. The first step is to recognize the problem and to accept that she’s not going to commit.
Talk to her directly and call out her actions. You’re both adults — the best thing you can do is be direct with these issues. Don’t beat around the bush, tell her how you feel, and don’t let anger get the better of you.
Don’t play into her game. If she tries to reel you in with her occasional flirty texts, ignore them. If you want to give her a chance, your only option is to text her yourself and put the ball in her court.
Let’s say she texts you that she misses you. Ask her out. If she’s just stringing you along, she’ll hem and haw and make excuses. When that happens, you know for sure that this relationship is over and she only wants to keep you nibbling on the line, but has no intention of actually pulling you in.
Finally, be firm when you say things are over. Don’t let her keep doing this to you! You’re wasting your time and you need to cut the ties now so you can go and fine someone worth your efforts.
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