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Most humans aren't mean-spirited by nature, but they do so many awful things in dating such as stringing along or leading on.
It's truly an art to lead someone on. You have to defy physics - keeping someone suspended in space for extended periods of time.
Your behavior and statements don't allow for an understanding of what's going on between the two of you. You don't let them go to move on with their life, but you also don't let them close enough to you to feel like you're officially together. You appear interested in someone, but you don't move it along and you keep it vague.
You can accomplish this by doing something as simple as constantly answering someone's excessive texts even though you have no intention of getting together with them, like my friend in my last post (opens in new tab).
Because it's so difficult to lead someone on purposefully, I believe most lead-ons are unintentional.
Picture a person's mind like surf. If you're in rough surf, you'll be tossed around. If that surf is smooth and calm, it will be a nice relaxing ride. Swim in a rough surf at your own risk. In other words, this unintentional leading on might occur because you're involved with someone who is not in a state of mind for a healthy relationship. (opens in new tab)
Here are some reasons a person might lead you on:
They Are Too Nice
Thankfully, it is natural for people to be nice. My friend I wrote about last week is nice - maybe too nice. So the guy who kept texting her must have been getting hope when she wrote back. (opens in new tab)Remember my observation about Southern girls? They were all so nice, it seemed like I had a chance (opens in new tab) - they talked to anyone. Lucky for me, I never assume I have a chance.
They Like the Attention
Hey, what's not to like about someone constantly stroking your ego - even if you're not that into them? It's nice to have someone around to make you feel desirable when dating life is slow. (opens in new tab)
They Are Confused
They could be confused about anything: "I want a boyfriend, no I don't," "I can't get over my ex,""I don't want to wreck the friendship," (opens in new tab) etc. They aren't on solid ground so they keep you close, but not too close.
They Are Playing the Field
...and probably leading many people on at the same time. (opens in new tab)
People flirt while they are in relationships because it means nothing. But to the single person pursuing them it has much more meaning. And if the person is taken but not particularly happy they will go through the motions even more with the pursuant, with no intention of breaking up with their present significant other.
Because They Can Do It
They probably won't stop until they are called out on it.
They Are Mental
This is one of the few times someone might lead you on purposefully.
Don't worry though - if you're mixed up with a crazy, getting led on might be the best thing that could happen all things considered. (opens in new tab)
They Don't Think They Are Leading You On
Sometimes people are disconnected when it comes to the perception of a relationship. Usually, it ends when one person expresses feelings and the other person says: "I thought we were just friends." (opens in new tab) If someone thinks you're on platonic level, they won't think their actions are giving you any hope, whether it's getting together to hang out every weekend or even if you jump in the same bed to sleep. (opens in new tab)
They Want Sex (Guys Are Most Guilty of This)
Take decisive action to avoid getting led on:
1. Call them on it: If you're confused, feeling suspended in space, then ask them what's up. It will force them to at least explain things and maybe you'll get a decisive answer.
2. Get out of there: They'll keep doing it if you don't take action. If you're not happy with the way a relationship is going, leave. (opens in new tab) It will force them to play their hand. If they don't take you back then you know it wasn't worth it. If they come calling, you can give it another shot and maybe they'll even change their ways.
Do you agree with my reasons for leading on? Are you ever aware that you're leading someone on? How have you dealt with being led on - do you agree with my solutions? Why do you think people lead other people on?
Follow me on Twitter: twitter.com/richravens (opens in new tab)
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