Do You Still Need To “Play the Game” When You’re In A Relationship?

In the beginning phase of dating someone that you’re really into, it’s hard to keep your cool. You don’t want to seem too clingy or needy, and you definitely don’t want to scare him away. So, what do you do? It’s simple: you have to play the game. If you do it right, your man will remain blissfully ignorant in his simple guy world, and he’ll never know you’re at home pacing back and forth and staring at your phone, losing your damn mind.

Of course, once your relationship progresses, things will settle down a bit, but do we really ever stop playing? According to some of my friends who’ve been with their significant others for years, they still have a few tricks up their sleeves even now. Still, the most important parts of an established relationship aren’t really the games, but rather habits we adopt to keep things moving in the right direction. You don’t want to sacrifice yourself or only think about his needs, but if you want to avoid conflict where possible, there are a few rules that you should think about following.

  1. Don’t do things that you know will annoy him. If you’re at the point where you know him well enough to be able to predict an argument, just leave it alone. The whole point of getting to know someone is getting know how they operate. If you know that something makes him angry or upset, don’t do that thing. It’s as simple as that.
  2. Let him have his boy’s night. Guys need time to unwind with their own gender just like we do. Let him off the leash (but not too far off) so that he can just hang out with his friends and be a guy.
  3. When he asks for space, give him space. It doesn’t mean, “I don’t like you, I never want to see you again.” It means, “Give me time to cool off and I’ll come back when I’m ready.” Time and time again, I’ve felt the need to talk it out with guys I’ve been with. Sometimes, all they really need is space.
  4. Don’t crowd him with phone calls or texts. No one wants to be babysat. You are not his mother and he doesn’t need to check in with you every five minutes. The biggest turn off for guys is constantly being bombarded by “Where are you?” text messages or calls. Let him reach out to you and he’ll tell you what’s up.
  5. Don’t bring up a past mistake or argument. We all secretly keep tally of past arguments and make note of what exactly caused that argument in the first place. The fight already ended. It’s in both of your best interests to leave past arguments in the past, especially during new fights.
  6. Say sorry and mean it. When the fight is over, put your differences aside and remember why you two are together in the first place. Apologize and move forward.
Lindsey is a Digital Advertising Professional and Freelance Writer based in New York City. In her spare time, she enjoys running, traveling, and drinking ridiculous amounts of coffee. Follow her on Twitter @lindseyruns