Is he a player??

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-04-2003
Is he a player??
Thu, 09-04-2003 - 6:05pm
Please give me some advice here people. About a month ago, a guy from my past (I have known him about 9 years) called me out of the blue. The last time I had seen him was about 3 years ago. Our history goes a little something like this. We would go out on a date, then he would disappear. Then he would resurface somehow, like I would run into him, or he would call me, then we would go out again… see the pattern. It was always inconsistent though, like we would never have consecutive dates, just random, one here, one there. The thing is, I really like him and have an amazing time with him. But why do you think he does this? This most recent time, he even called my old home, not knowing I live on my own now, and asked my father for my new phone number. We went out on a great date and… guessed it!!! Haven’t heard from him since. I get the feeling he likes me, even when we were in school together, he’d always be flirtatious, ask what I was doing on weekends, etc. So whats the point of all this? What was the point of contacting me like that, only to blow me off again.?? Does this sound like a game player to you or what? Advice please. Thanks in advance……
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Thu, 09-04-2003 - 7:11pm
Title: He knows....

...that you are a reliable good time. Why would that be a mystery?

I would bet anything that he doesn't think of these outings as "dates" least not in the "I really like him a lot" sense. He doesn't see them as the potential start of a relationship...he says them as fun, but isolated events, each standing on its own, irrelevant of all previous events.

And why shouldn't he think this? You don't mention that he has done anything that SHOULD warrant a "the NERVE of the guy" reaction when he "calls out of the blue". Has he ever set up a date, and then failed to show up? Has he ever made a firm commitment to "I will call you Friday" and failed to do so? I presume he has done nothing that would paint him as a total cad...such as for example sleep with you, then drop totally out of sight...because you KEEP going out with him.

So...if this is the case...that he shows up...treats you like a lady...shows you a good time...disappears...then repeats successfully two years later...then why WOULDN'T he do so?

He has fun. You have fun. Where is the problem?

The "problem" is that you've ASSUMED (unless there is more to this story than what you've shared) there is something more to this than what empirical evidence you have. Despite years of proof that he doesn't want anything more than to periodically hang out and do whatever it is that the two of you do, you've ASSUMED that he has some "point"...when...based on what you've shared (and only what you've shared...if there is more, then you have to share that data)...he has done nothing to indicate that (IMHO).

Lemme ask a question...when you talk about him you do anything to stay in touch with HIM? That is to say...he puts the effort into tracking you down...taking you out...showing you a nice time. Do you ever respond by contacting him to let him know that you had a good time? After years of him asking you out...have you ever made it plain that you'd like to see him again by ASKING him when to two of you can get together again?

My advice...stop worrying about it. If you want to go out with him when he calls...go. If you want to go out with him again...ask. But nine years is long enough to pine for someone. If you want something to develop from this (nothing wrong with that), then you are gonna have to do something other than wait for him.

But...if you're asking if he has some real romantic interest (as in, does he want anything from you other than to go out once every three years or so), my answer would be "no". He wants whatever he gets whenever you guys go out. A fun time, a laugh, a smile...and whatever else the equation does (or does not) include.

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Fri, 09-05-2003 - 2:38am
Title: When you go on these "dates"...

is there any serious physical contact? I mean real kisses or beyond--hugs and pecks on the cheek and hand-holding don't count.

The reason I ask is that this guy's behavior is very much like that of me and many of my friends. I have a number of folks I consider friends who are not a daily part of my life for whatever reason, but who pop up from time to time wanting to have lunch or dinner or a movie or a walk in the wetlands with me. In many ways, these outings might be considered to be "dates"--they often involve dinner at a restaurant, taking walks, lots of chatting, etc. But they aren't romantic dates. They're friend-dates. I always have a wonderful time--it's a great thing to catch up with a friend.

And usually, once every few months (or few years, in the case of the ones who live far away) is enough. These aren't my day-to-day friends. We often don't share that much in common in our current lives. A few hours or a weekend (for out-of-town visits) is plenty of time to get reacquainted, catch up, have a great time, and then merrily go on our separate ways till we get a yen to see one another again to do the same thing.

It sounds to me for all the world like this is what this guy is doing with you. He considers you a friend and wants to see you every now and then to catch up. That's a happy thing--enjoy your time with him. We can never have too many friends. But unless there are extenuating circumstances such as you two getting hot and heavy at the end of the "date", don't read more into it than friendship.


iVillage Member
Registered: 09-04-2003
Fri, 09-05-2003 - 10:50am
I think I did leave some important info out here. Yes, we DO get "hot and heavy" with each other. I have never slept with him, but we have come close. He never sticks around long enough for us to go that far!! So these isolated incidents are more than friendship dates, I think. You made some good points though...maybe he doesn't know I expect it to turn into more. And about me contacting him....yes, in the past I have made an effort....calling him, showing interest. And yes, he HAS pulled the "i'll call you on so and so day..." and then not followed through. He even told me he lost my number once when I ran into him, and asked for it again. This was 3 years ago. I got fed up and didn't give it to him, fed up with the pattern of his unreliability. This time he went out of his way to get in touch, 3 years later. All these things are making me feel like he is nothing more than a game much as I want to believe otherwise. Also,once we were supposed to go out, and he didn't call when he said he would. He called like 3 weeks later. I asked him what happened, why he didn't call when he was supposed to.... his response?? "Its not like you called me, either." If I live to be 300 I will never understand the way the male brain works.....

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Fri, 09-05-2003 - 11:35am
Title: For what it is worth...

**"If I live to be 300 I will never understand the way the male brain works... "

...this isn't only a male behavior.

I went thorough a similar episode with a woman I still "know", except the timeline for contact tended to be measured in months versus years. I'd call, we'd go out a couple times...then she'd vanish (actually, I always knew how to reach her insofar as contact was more like she would be difficult to get a hold of...not returning phone calls and emails). Then, she would find out I was involved with someone else through a mutual friend, and there you she comes around again.

This pattern lasted for from a few months after my divorce (when I first met her through the mutual friend) right up until she heard I was getting married...a period of more than 4 years. THEN she pulled out all the stops, telling me how much she always really liked me, and how foolish it was for her to play "hard to get", and how she was never really sure how I felt about her, and that there always seemed to be some "other woman" in my life (as though I was supposed to stop dating other people completely before she could agree to actually return phone calls consistently). She even pretty much said...twice now...that if / when I ever want to collect a booty ride, she is available...I guess she just can't stand the thought that I don't have any interest in her anymore.

My point is that this is a PEOPLE behavior...not a "male" behavior"...people who both like attention (she absolutely did and still does) and also are selfish in their mindset (giving no thought to how their behavior impacts the other person...why would she offer herself to me sexually knowing I am married if we are supposed to be "friends"?) behave this way. Erin / Doubleblade calls them "opportunist".

The truth is, there is nothing here to "understand" least on his part. It is pretty I said, he knows you are a reliable source for a good time...always up for some "hot and heavy". He also might have a personal grudge / bet with himself that he is one day going to get you into to bed (I will admit to their being some "male brain" behavior surrounding is "the booty that got away"

The REAL mystery is...why do YOU do it? If you don't like this behavior pattern...then why have you been a willing participant for the last nine years? Why would you even EXPECT him to behave any differently after NINE YEARS?

GoGo...who has no plans to live until he is 300...but also is often baffled by the workings of the female mind. How can you complain about a behavior that you repeatedly encourage and endorse?

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-04-2003
Fri, 09-05-2003 - 12:43pm
Well, I don't think that I either encourage or endorse this behavior. Here I am, just minding my own business, and he contacts me.... how is THAT encouraging this kind of behavior?? Because I have fallen for it time and time again? Allowed him to do it time and time again? I give him the benefit of the doubt, which, I am starting to realize, is stupidity on my part, because I think to myself, THIS time will be different, maybe hes changed, gotten older, tired of playing games... But I agree, after 9 or 10 years of this same pattern, it is evident that a leapord doesn't change its spots. Yes, a female is capable of playing games just as easily, I am not doubting this. I however, am not into game playing. If I like someone, I like someone end of leading them on, calling, not calling, disappearing etc etc. To me thats just a major waste of time.
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Fri, 09-05-2003 - 1:00pm
QUESTION: "Well, I don't think that I either encourage or endorse this behavior. Here I am, just minding my own business, and he contacts me... how is THAT encouraging this kind of behavior??"

ANSWER: "Because I have fallen for it time and time again?"


>>I give him the benefit of the doubt, which, I am starting to realize, is stupidity on my part, because I think to myself, THIS time will be different, maybe he's changed, gotten older, tired of playing games... <<<

No, you're not the least bit stupid. But neither are you being misled.

What you're doing is hoping for or anticipating change in someone who has NO motivation to change. WHY would he change (or evolve or take you seriously) when he ALWAYS gets what he wants from you, doing what he has ALWAYS done??

You've created a pattern of behaviour from him. You've taught him how to treat you.

>>If I like someone, I like someone end of leading them on, calling, not calling, disappearing etc etc. To me thats just a major waste of time.<<

I'm a woman, so I understand what you are saying. But to him, this is NOT a waste of time. He's getting what he WANTS. He's getting his payoff. There is no reason in the world for him to change his behaviour because he is GETTING WHAT HE WANTS.

It's really pretty simple, dontcha think?


glammie . . . .

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Fri, 09-05-2003 - 9:32pm
Title: I'm with Glammie...

Yup, *absolutely* you are endorsing and encouraging this guy's behavior. Every time you sound pleased to hear from him on the phone, every time you go out with him, *most importantly* every time you make out with him on a date you encourage and endorse his behavior. He appears to think of you as a Once In A Blue Moon Hookup, and since you go out, have a good time, and get friendly with him, he no doubt assumes you think of him the same way. Or he doesn't care what you think so long as he's getting what he wants. (Which he clearly is.)

You're not stupid. However, you have fallen into a trap that both men and women fall into all the time--you *assume* that the other person you're dealing with thinks just like you do, or somehow is capable of knowing what *you* are thinking even though you haven't told him. It never seems to work out that way. Even now, married for four years, I still have to be careful to give my dh direct statements about what I want, and to ask him direct questions.


iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Tue, 09-09-2003 - 9:36am
He does it because you allow it. Period.
iVillage Member
Registered: 09-04-2003
Tue, 09-09-2003 - 9:52am
I don't think I really "allowed" it last time (that is , 3 years ago) When I ran into him, he asked for my number, and I didn't give it to him....I gave him a hard time. We were both at this place at the same time, watching a band, and I even left him standing there. I just said "whats up?" and walked out, with him there still. 3 years later........I hear from him. Which is why I thought maybe he would realize that I won't put up with the same crap, cause I didn't make it so easy for him last time. But I guess I still do....because he pulled it all over again. Fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me......
iVillage Member
Registered: 05-24-2003
Wed, 09-10-2003 - 10:55pm
I do not think he is playing games.

If you enjoy spending time with him, then appreciate the involvement for what it is worth - the enjoyment of his time and company, here and there.

If what he is doing upsets you though, you have a right to tell him you don't want to be involved any longer.