In the professional literature it is also called as “push-pull” game; in my own dictionary I use the term “floating” for such situations. But what are these situations like? They are when the man throws in an idea, that he knows the woman likes very much. But then it does not come true, nothing happens. This is what I call floating.
He floats it in what he would do, what program he would imagine together with you, but eventually nothing happens. Everything stays at the level of words, no actions follows. He does not walk the talk, basically. Or – even if sometimes there is an action – it only happens after a long-long time. In the meantime, the woman is waiting eagerly for the floating thing to reach the ground and to happen.
This is a psychological game. The man’s only goal is to chain the woman to himself by the mechanism of promising. Promising this and that, even more, very much.
With this, he fires up the woman, her interest towards him and the process of chaining begins. The woman believes that these things are indeed going to happen and as she is patient (or warns herself to be patient, even several times in a row), she is waiting for the things to come true. Sometimes they indeed come true, however it is not the majority of the cases.
In floating this is what can make you insecure – sometimes these things arrive to the ground and happen and sometimes they don’t.
There is no one, well-defined process flow for this, there is no pattern, based on which this game could be recognised and you could quit from it. Therefore, many times the end result of it all is that the woman becomes completely insecure. She does not understand that if last time this floated thing could actually happen, why cannot it happen now? Maybe more patience is needed? Or this poor gentleman is maybe really this busy, that he cannot spare time for me?
A great truth comes to my mind: If a man wants to do something for a woman, if he wants to do nice things for her, he does it. He does not procrastinate, does not look for excuses, but acts.
As per the floating, this is exactly what does not happen. The side of promises is a lot heavier on the scale than the side of the actions. But we, women, many times fool our own selves because we would like it to work out finally fine for once and for all. We could also think that we are impatient, maybe we want too much.
I can quote here a sentence from my dear Mother: “You have time for whatever you want to have it for”.
If you feel that you do not have the time for something, it actually means that you do not want to have the time for it. Not not having, but not wanting to have. Big difference. Get the taste of it.
I managed to experience this situation with a dating partner recently.
After a slow chatting phase, he invited me to have dinner with him, his brother and the girlfriend of the brother. Not a typical first date, but well, it cannot hurt. However, then it turned out that this dinner would be at the apartment of the gentleman. I told him that for me this is way to out of my comfort zone to meet someone from zero at his apartment. So, you are very nice, thank you, but no thank you. Also, I told him, that if we can meet before that, have a drink somewhere out, getting to know each other a bit, we can see it later on. He did not react to this offer of mine at any level.
Here we could have thought still quite about anything, but I was determined that these are my conditions as a woman, no matter the impact. At the end, the day of the supposedly joint dinner passed, without the gentleman initiating our date. He only sent the usual daily “how is your day/evening going” messages.
Later, he eventually got to the point of asking me out for a dinner, just him and myself together, in a restaurant. Well, we got here too, great. All right. Having things slowly is supposed to be a good thing. I am patient.
We had our dinner, had a great conversation. Or actually – post-assessing the situation – he was talking and telling stories, to which I reacted with my own ones. Because he didn’t actually ask any questions from me. What else, once, when I started to tell something about myself, he – who was leaned to the table up until then – leaned back in his chair. We could consider it as a small, tiny detail, but body language does not lie. Most of the times, we cannot even control it consciously. Being a coach, my perception to these things is very sophisticated, as during a coaching session based on these, I can know how much the person in front of me is willing to internalise the information we are talking about. This is the same case on a date. At this moment I knew that he is actually not interested in what I am talking about.
Besides this however, there were many other things which made me believe he is a nice person, so I decided to wait it out. Patience, of course. Again.
At the end of that evening he said that now we could have that dinner the four of us, we can even have a drink before that somewhere out, as I would prefer. This was a really considerate thing of him. He told me to let him know, when I am free. I told him, that in 2-days-time I have a free evening.
This was the point when he retreated heavily and started to mumble. I told him that ok, then as he thinks, let me know when it is good for him.
I guess at this point it should have been completely clear for me that I am a victim of a floating game. But I was still in the phase of patience, waiting for it, believing that I am the one being too quick.
However, in the coming more or less one week, he was still only sending me the messages of “how is your day/evening going”. No efforts were made from his end to get to know each other more or to meet in person. It eventually turned on the light for me.
This man is a floater!! He does not let him deeply into getting to know someone, he does not want to get to know me and he only floats in the possibility of any future encounter. From which nothing reaches the ground, of course.
I decided to write to him during the usual “how is your morning going” chatting, that in “my world” if a man is interested in a woman, he invests time in getting to know her, meet with her in person and unfortunately, in our case I do not feel this happening. I expressed my gratitude regarding our encounter, the dinner, I wished him good luck in dating and that I honestly hope he will find what he is looking for.
What was the reaction to this?
Nothing. He did not write anything. He blocked me on WhatApp.
What did really happen here, if we go backstage?
Stone cold psychological game. The Man was floating, played out of ego. The Woman – not-knowingly – went into the game, in the first round she believed that she needs to force herself to stop her eagerness to get to know the Man more. After this, the Woman realised what this whole thing is about and courteously quitted the game. This, however, did hurt the ego of the Man (as he was playing it with that) and reacted to the situation accordingly. Zero reaction, plus a blocking – instead of a courteous, adult-like saying goodbye.
I believe that the end of the story speaks for itself. If one party quits a game, that always hurts the ego of the other one – as this latter one makes the game move with the ego. As a result, the person left alone in the game can have the reaction of an aggressive attack (like my extreme narcissistic dating partner before), an approach full of empty promises (like the ex-boyfriend in Anna’s story) or a complete I-ignore-the-other-person and complete retreat – as in this current case.
Whatever the other person’s reaction might be in such a situation, the most important is to recognise the psychological game we are involved in and – if you cannot solve it – quit from it. For you own sake.