The Playbook For The Modern Man

The Dating Truth Everyone Knows But No-One Admits

Dating ‘games’ get a bad rap. But could they actually serve a purpose?

If you’ve ever had a particularly spicy session between the sheets — whether with someone you’ve known twenty minutes or twenty years — you’ll know that ’emotional honesty’ is key to having the best sex of your life. However, when it comes to dating, there is one specious truth that most of us choose to ignore.

“Everybody hates the dating game until it actually works out.”

While we are not excusing (per se) ghosting, orbiting, or any of the other ‘social media age’ dating sins — we are calling to account people’s lazy tendency to write off ‘dating in 2019’.

Inspired by the aforementioned quote — Reddit’s r/dating_advice community — is currently debating whether dating ‘games’ actually serve a purpose — and whether it’s hypocritical to criticise them.


While some users despised ambiguity (“I hate the ‘game’. I wish people would just say what they felt and not play,”) others on the trending thread argued, “Sometimes the game is necessary.”

Of course, while major deal breakers like cheating and/or being on the FBI’s most wanted list were roundly criticised (“Waiting until real emotions are involved to let someone know life altering information about you is really f*cked up!”) the idea that dating games are actually quite useful kept popping up.

“A lot of people don’t respond well to the truth (and) a lot of the time the truth will make things extremely uncomfortable or complicate the situation more.”

“Let’s say you like your friend,” one user suggested, “Not even in love, just kind of a crush — and you’re not sure how he/she feels about you.”

“You could just straight up tell him/her, but one of two things will happen. They can either react positively, as everyone hopes, or they could reject your proposal and then the friendship becomes awkward.”

It was also acknowledged that a little grey area is inevitable, with one introspective commenter admitting: “I have no idea what I’m truly feeling most of the time, how the hell am I going to tell other people?”.

“People don’t necessarily know instantly if the person in front of them meshes with what they want. Sometimes what looks like ‘playing games’ is more like still checking things out. That’s what dating is. That’s what flirting is.”

Others were even harsher, suggesting that if you’re sick of people “playing games” it may not be the games that are the problem for you: “Not saying people also don’t play games, just saying sometimes what you’re seeing is honesty.”

Or, as one aspiring comedian put it: eharmony sells hope “one heartbreak at a time.” Inspired? Check out the following tools for improvement and your dating life may not suffer the same fate as the Reddit misanthropes.

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