A College Girl Gets Played and Shares What She Learned

December 9, 2010


A typical young Ford Model


In yesterday’s discussion on what a man’s choice of friends may say about his character, collegegirl1 bravely shared a list of what she’s learned from having been played. I want to share it here because it’s quite typical, I think, in its mix of hurt, insights and residual confusion. For the record, everything in this post applies to both men and women.

Collegegirl1:

I am really hurting now over a hookup situation but I wanted to provide things I learned and see if you agree with me…

Collegegirl1, you’re already way ahead of the pack. You are reflecting on your experience, and instead of complaining about what he did wrong, you’re examining your own actions. This is, in fact, the only way to prevent being played again.

I learned that if everyone is telling you a guy is not good (and you are better–That’s a real compliment when his guy friends say that!) you should listen.

If guys are telling you this, you should absolutely listen, especially if they are his friends. As we saw in yesterday’s post, guys will generally stay out of another guy’s business unless there is compelling motivation, and sometimes not even then.

There is one exception, and it’s not uncommon. Both men and women employ the strategy of putting down someone’s significant other when they are trying to get in there themselves. It is effective both for short-term flings, and long-term commitments. “He’s not good enough for you…..but I am” is often the real message. However, when numerous people are telling you to be careful, or hinting that the guy has quite a history with women, it’s best to walk away.

If your girlfriends are telling you he’s no good, make sure they aren’t acting out of jealousy, especially if they have a history of going for the bad boys.

I learned that if the guy has a history of cheating (which he did) and got away with it, no reason he’s going to change.

Precisely. Anyone who has a history of cheating is at high risk for further cheating. Probably forever. As you say, the fact that he suffered no consequences for his behavior makes it even more likely. In fact, not only is he unlikely to change due to the positive reinforcement he received, he may well be someone who enjoys risk and seeks novelty by nature.

I learned that if a guy makes mistakes early on and apologizes and you keep forgiving him, then he’ll think he doesn’t really have to go out of his way to try hard to do the right thing. He will always have you.

Forgiveness is positive reinforcement. You are teaching him that he can treat you poorly without repercussions. You must have zero tolerance for behaviors that signal poor character. We all make mistakes, but not all mistakes are created equal. Cheating? I see no reason to forgive that in someone you’re dating. Did he fail to return your call? Maybe not such a big deal. Flirted with other girls in front of you? Unacceptable. Repeatedly treated you disrespectfully? Dealbreaker.

It is important to remember that hooking up generally means “no strings,” but that doesn’t mean that normal behavioral standards don’t apply. He should tell the truth, follow through on his promises, and treat you the way he likes to be treated.

I learned if a guy is good looking, he’ll think he has a lot of options. This guy bragged that he was Ford Model! I have been told I’m just as good looking, but I guess I don’t have the confidence to think I can get any guy in the world, the way he thought so with girls.

Was he really a Ford model? If so, he not only has options, he makes a living on his looks. The odds of his being relationship material are about zero. Either way, the bragging should have been a major turnoff. Why wasn’t it?

Remember, it doesn’t matter how good looking you are if a guy wants to stay single. Your looks can attract him, but will not make him monogamous. In fact, if he’s that good looking, he can presumably pull any girl he wants, and keep cycling new ones through. Most men, especially at a young age, will prefer that if they can get it.

Bottom line, he does have a lot of options. You probably do too, which is why you shouldn’t be settling for a man who can’t give you what you want.

I learned that even though a guy says I have qualities of a girlfriend , if he tells me off the bat he doesn’t want one that’s a total offense right? Like he can’t see me being his girlfriend 3-4 months down the line? Then I shouldn’t hook up with him.

Correct. You shouldn’t hook up with him. Saying, “You’d be great for some other guy” is not a compliment. The single biggest mistake women make is not believing a man when he says he doesn’t want a girlfriend. From now on, believe every single guy who says that.

Another common thing is for guys to have their friends let a girl know on their behalf. “Just so you know, Tim isn’t looking for anything serious.” Again, this could be one guy speaking with his friend’s knowledge, or he might be cockblocking. Only take the word of the guy you’re seeing, don’t ever use intermediaries.

I realize douchebags don’t always hang with douchebags. Not all his friends were great looking and the ones that weren’t were genuinely nicer. They told me he was bad news, but I wanted to prove everyone wrong..when he was just putting me on the back burner.

The fact that you wanted to prove everyone wrong tells me you fell into that chick flick fantasy of being “the exception.” If you had succeeded, you’d be the girl who had tamed the wild beast. That’s a loser’s game, and there’s a lot of female roadkill to prove it. Most guys like him who agree to a relationship wind up cheating anyway. As he has already demonstrated.

I learned instincts are right. If you believe from the start the guy isn’t good then no matter what he SAYS to you you’ll end up getting hurt.

Always trust your gut. If you are wondering if he likes you, then he doesn’t. Not enough. Don’t listen to girl friends who tell you he acts like he is really into you when you’re together. They know even less than you do.

If you manage to get a relationship with a douche, then you’re now the proud new girlfriend of a douche. Don’t be that girl. The girl who values her own social status more than the relationship itself. The girl who dates a jerk who gives neither love nor affection. That is worse than a waste of time – it’s damaging to your psyche, and leaves you less open to something real with a good man in the future. Because you’ll be less of a good woman.

I really, even though I am 21, am new to the hookup scene and really…just am not satisfied. I’d rather hold out for a guy who treats me right because the physical pleasure is not worth all the emotional pain that comes with it. I’m really going to look out for all the warning signs I’ve listed and apply it so I KNOW when to back off immediately, because the longer I hold on to things the more I get hurt.

Good for you, it will take personal strength and impulse control. Attention from a gorgeous guy is not easy to rebuff. Only by paying attention to the qualities that say TOXIC can you avoid being continually played in this way. One of the reasons I say that pretty women sometimes have it harder is that they tend to draw attention from the best-looking men, who rarely need to pursue anyone. It’s very rare that those men make good boyfriends. In this case, you were warned, but that won’t always be the case. You must learn to discern the qualities you seek in a guy.

He’s not good at all..and even though I admit to this I don’t know why I’m still upset. I don’t know WHY I still want to talk to him…and “be friends” like he said. can that really happen? Can you be friends with someone who treats you like shit?

No, and why would you want to? Tell this guy he is not friendship material. Tell him you don’t wish to hear from him again. Trust me, it’s the only way to get your self-respect back. If you allow him to be part of your life in any way, you are absolving him. You are also sending a message to other girls that he’s OK. Women would be a lot better off if they gave each other a reality check about guys like him, so pay it forward.

If it seems too good to be true, it is. This should serve as a wake-up call that you need to rethink the way you choose men, and pay attention to the character clues that are always present. If you do that, you need never get played again.