A Guy Shares 10 Sly Signs He’s Playing You

One of the most challenging parts of dating is trying to understand the other person’s feelings or motivations. I imagine this is even more challenging for women, primarily because so many guys out there are players who are just interested in one thing, and it’s not a serious relationship. Unfortunately, it’s not always easy to spot a toxic guy, especially because a lot of them are good at hiding their intentions and finding a way to convince you they’re trustworthy. To help you avoid wasting your time, here are some subtle signs that he might be playing you.

  1. He has an over-active lifestyle. Spoiler alert: a guy who’s willing to settle down into a serious relationship is one who’s cool with staying at home. He wants to spend quality one-on-one time with you. Meanwhile, the guy you always see at the bar or says he goes out a lot of travels for work is probably a player. If nothing else, he’s living the lifestyle of a player. He either doesn’t know what he’s looking for or likes looking a little too much. Either way, he’s probably not relationship material.
  2. He’s a little too good at flirting. Flirting is like anything else in that the more you do it, the better you get at it. This is why you should beware of guys who are smooth talkers. It usually means that they’re players who have done a lot of flirting. Seasoned flirts know exactly what they need to say to get into a woman’s good graces. Meanwhile, a nerdy guy who seems nervous is probably more the relationship type.
  3. He’s glued to his phone. For starters, do you really want to be with a guy who’s always on his phone and can’t give you his full attention? Also, a guy who seems to be receiving a lot of texts is probably a player. In fairness, you don’t always know what he’s doing on his phone, but he could easily be receiving texts from other women. Guys like this are all about keeping their options open, which is why you tend to see them with phones in hand.
  4. He comes on too strong. Most guys who are open to a serious relationship are willing to take their time, but a player who wants to hit it and quit will try to rush through the process. He’ll shower you with compliments right off the bat and test the waters to see how quickly you might sleep with him. There’s almost no other reason for a guy to come on so strong or aggressively unless he’s a bonafide player.
  5. He only texts at night. If he’s messaging you before bed to say goodnight and that he hopes you sleep well, that’s one thing. If he’s just asking of you’re up, what you’re doing, if you’re bored, etc. then that’s not a good sign. Guys like this only text when they want something, and that’s usually to hop between the sheets for a quick romp.
  6. Your conversations are superficial. There are some guys who want to get to know you better, but players are not among them. These guys focus on compliments and keeping things superficial rather than trying to get to know the real you. If he doesn’t ask you about anything below the surface, he’s probably not planning on being around too long. In fact, he may only be around long enough to sleep with you.
  7. He brags about himself. I think we can all agree that players are self-centered people. That’s why it’s not surprising that they like talking about themselves. Specifically, everything he says sounds like a subtle brag. In a way, he’s trying to convince you that he’s special and that you would be lucky to be with him. His main goal is to sleep with you and he’s trying to prove his worthiness. Sadly, they rarely live up to their grandiose claims either!
  8. He’s always busy. Players tend to have an active lifestyle. It’s not easy keeping up with multiple women at once on top of everything else in their lives. A guy who’s playing you doesn’t return texts quickly and can’t always find the time to see you when it’s convenient for you. If everything is based around his schedule, he’s either not that interested or he’s secretly a player.
  9. He has sketchy friends. Fair or not, you are the company you keep. If his friends seem a little sketchy or seem like they might be players, he’s probably a bad dude. I mean, how often do you find one good guy within a group of players? If you get a bad vibe from the people he surrounds himself with, it’s okay to assume that he’s one of them and is probably a player.
  10. He always talks about sex. For a player, sex is always the end game. That means he won’t be shy about making suggestive comments or subtly bringing sex into the conversation. If he’s interested in a serious relationship, he’ll usually be more patient and diplomatic in talking about sex, but a player will cut to the chase and be quite blunt about it. An experienced player will do this without making you suspicious, but the end result is still the same: he wants to know if you’ll sleep with him and when. And if you do, he’ll be gone not long after.
Bryan Zarpentine graduated from Syracuse University and lives in upstate New York, where he writes largely about the world of sports. His work has appeared on Franchise Sports and WSN, among others. You can find him on Twitter @BZarp.