Men are not the masters of the subtle. We’re the s*x that laughs at farts and watches Jean-Claude Van Damme movies, and we wouldn’t know subtlety if it hit us over the head with a brick (which it probably wouldn’t do, since, you know, it’s subtlety and all).
As such, many of us have problems when it comes to dealing with women. Women communicate very subtly, and guys are looking for something more along the lines of a large neon sign declaring that you’re willing to sleep with us or that you’d like to see us thrown through a plate glass window.
The prices of neon and plate glass are through the roof though. So, until we learn to communicate better, here’s a look at a few of the more subtle signals a woman might send that a guy will completely miss.
1. Looking at us, then looking away.
You Think: You’re coyly telling a guy that you’re interested in him.
He Thinks: He’s got something on his face that you don’t want to look at for very long. Either that, or you’re trying to figure out what kind of beer he’s drinking. Guys tend to take the “looking, then looking away” thing as an insult, and end up giving a cold shoulder to women genuinely interested in them.
2. Verbal innuendo.
You Think: By dropping suggestive words, you’re initiating a romantic flirtation or otherwise getting your message across.
He Thinks: You’re using weird words. Guys completely miss verbal innuendo from women on a regular basis, because the words we use for innuendo are so different from the words that you use. Again, we’re looking for something obvious. Dropping words into a conversation isn’t going to work unless you’re being fairly explicit.
3. Acting tired.
You Think: You’re telling a guy that you want to leave a party to go home right away, in a way that doesn’t offend the people around you.
He Thinks: You want to go sleep in the car while he continues to have a good time. “Tired” to a man means “manageable.” We’re only going to get that you don’t want to be in a certain place if you actually tell us that–yes, men are actually that obtuse.
4. Various breakup lingo.
You Think: By being polite, you’re sparing the guy the indignity of being dumped.
He Thinks: You’re still interested. When you break off a relationship with a guy, be clear about your intentions; don’t say anything about “taking a break for a while” or “taking some time to rethink things.” This is just leading the guy on, and he’ll think that he still has a shot–and men are nothing if not tenacious. Don’t give him the wrong impression by accident. It’s better to get dumped than to be mislead, even if it’s unintentional.
5. Flirting touches.
You Think: You’re flirting by making excuses to touch him, wiping some lint off of his shirt or touching his shoulder when he says something mildly amusing.
He Thinks: You’re flirting, but he’s unlikely to notice the touches unless you stick with it. Once again, I’ve got to point out that guys are less sensitive to subtlety than rocks–the first few flirting attempts go right over our heads. Keep at it, though, and he’ll figure out what you’re getting at.
Have you noticed a guy completely missing what you believe to be an obvious signal? Post in the comments.
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