Game-Playing: Dating isn't a Game
By Elizabeth Barrera
Dating life is rough, let me tell you. To all of you involved in happy, loving, and fulfilling relationships, you’re at luck. You don’t have to deal with constant assumptions and game playing. Those of us stuck in situationships, complicated relationships, and even just trying to figure out the playing field, are finding it hard to find love mainly because of the games we all play. It’s always the same story. They want us, we don’t want them. We want them, they don’t want us. We want each other, but it’s a hot mess. They pull us close, then let go. We argue and cut communication. One of us gives in and we’re back in the scene. Sound pretty familiar? How unhealthy is that, though?
The only games I was pretty good at were those involving balls, real ones at least. You know, the sporty ones like basketball and tennis? However, the older I get, the more I realize that dating nowadays is so similar to tennis, or a slower version of it. And it’s a game that not even then, was I good at. In tennis, there are two players looking for a win. It’s a fast-paced game that sometimes takes hours to finish. It’s back and forth, exhausting, and only one person wins.
That in itself is pretty similar to game-playing in dating. Both people are looking for a win, but the truth is that nobody wins when you play games. Most of the time, if you have multiple people in your life, you’re left unsatisfied and empty.
Playing games is never the best option to take, and I speak mostly to young(er) people who think getting texts left and right from several love interests is pleasing. Sure, you can choose to love them one day, then completely ignore them the next day, and instead, cater your full attention to someone else. Try it. Keep treating people like that, and watch them all walk away. Because even the most noble and caring person will get tired of holding on to something so painful and toxic. Nobody is going to stick around for mistreatment or callous actions. You can’t pull someone in just to push them away. That’s a level I like to call “fucked up.” Don’t do that.
Your bros or girls will roast you for settling down with one good woman (or man) instead of chasing multiple? Big deal, grow up. You’re the one who will have to sleep alone and cold at night wondering if your STD screening will come back clean. You’re the one who will be putting up with the reputation you’re building and having to answer angry texts or calls throughout the day.
Game-playing resembles fear of commitment, insecurity, and narcissism. So what can you do instead? You guessed it! Don’t play games with people. Always speak with honesty and yearn for self-growth. Playing games is immature and unfulfilling. You’ll find more peace by always telling the truth and expressing how you truly feel, both physically and verbally. It’s as simple as that.