Playing hard to get?

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Sunday, April 6, 2014

Michelle: A lady wrote about her “relationship” problem. She wrote: “I’ve been interested in a guy for a few years, and our relationship is mainly through texts and emails. We have met in person, talked on the phone a lot, and chatted online. I know he is interested too, but he is terribly shy (but I like it).

“When I offered him more clues of evolving our relationship from friendship to romantic, he backed away. I tried to respect his need for distance. Still, I don’t want to be making a fool of myself.

“My question is, how long is too long for a guy to respond back to a passionate email? He has not yet responded. He has not said outright that he is currently interested, but he has hinted, and in the past has said he loves me. I’m so confused! Is it rude of him to make me wait so long after I have made myself vulnerable emotionally to him?” What do you say to this, DJ?


DJ: Let me be the one to break this up so this lady won’t have to make excuses: this guy is not interested. It doesn’t matter whether he’s based in Cebu or in Mt. Everest. A guy who likes a girl will find a way to communicate. It doesn’t mean her phone beeps every five minutes. But he will stay in touch at a consistent pace that will make her feel like his girl. Much as we’d like to speculate that he’s just being enigmatic, mysterious, busy or in this case, shy but sorry I will have to burst the bubble and save her from a potentially needless heartbreak.

She might just get herself into an emotional roller coaster—one day confused, one day elated but always lacking in direction.

M: To me, this so-called relationship is not a relationship at all. I recall an article that said that this type of relationship is one of the dead-end dating patterns called “Fantasy.” We have a more precise term in the vernacular for fantasy: ga dahom. When one is in the fantasy trap, one wants to believe that someone is into him or her but is just having a problem expressing it. So the tendency is for one to make up all kinds of excuses that the guy is “just shy” or torpe and ignores the clear signs that the other person does not feel the same way.

I think even a shy guy will respond if the woman will make it easy for him. The shy guy will make the next move if he is truly into the woman. That’s why ladies if you drop clues and he backs away, I think it should be obvious enough that there’s nothing mutual about your feelings for
each other. If there’s MU going on its not mutual understanding
but a MisUnderstsanding.

DJ: At least she’s done her part. She gave him a clue. But it seems like he chose to be clueless. And in my opinion, if this dude is still acting like a wooden plank and is not making any move, I suggest it’s time to rid her face of that dreamy expression and just walk away. True, lasting
relationships are made up of two people who love each other. It has nothing to do with getting someone to like you. It is about someone choosing to love you. Whatever his reasons for not responding to her passionate email, the problem is more with him than it is with her. No need to waste time analyzing the cause. Finding excuse after excuse does not make it love in any shape or form. To put things simply—if he is hard to get, he’s not just into her. At least she’s not perpetually stuck in an unrecognizable world somewhere in between the black hole and the twilight zone.

M: A lot of people are afraid to communicate what’s on their mind because they don’t want to make a fool of themselves. But by not communicating what’s on your mind and by just simply assuming or hinting, you’re bound to make a bigger fool of yourself. Being honest is the best way to fi gure out what is going on in a situation. If we hide behind our fears, we will not be rejected and we will not feel the pain of rejection. On the other hand, since we’re not putting our feelings out there then we don’t really know what the other person feels and there’s always that feeling of uncertainty, including the possibility of being rejected. Sometimes it’s not good to play safe. You don’t want to waste a couple of years. And it’s no good waiting in vain. Remember, time and tide waits for no man. Or woman, especially one with a ticking biological clock. Tick tock!

DJ: She’s in a point of “if.” She’s confronted by possibilities. She can choose to continue to stay in a fl atland and possibly drown on the same recurring pattern or make a decision and face whatever are its consequence. She already made her move. Healthy dating relationships need to be reciprocal—two people involved and are investing in one another, two people committing, communicating and making things work. Anything less is not worthy of the wait. Nor will it ever be. Why settle? She is so much more than worth it.

Perhaps it’s time to quit waiting for something to begin or end, move forward, continue to build a life she can be proud of and not let any guy, or any person for that matter, judge her value. Love moves on every day. The right one will come in time. (

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on April 06, 2014.


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