The Seven Sins of Dating #1: Bargaining

Men of character don’t bargain with women. Women of character don’t bargain with men.

You won’t catch a self-respecting man or woman thinking:

“What should I do to make her think I’m interesting?”

“What do I wear to make him want me?”

“Does negging work?”

“I hope she doesn’t think I’m creepy”

“How do I make him want me for more than sex?”

“What do I say to her that’ll make her like me?”

“I’ll wait 3 days to text him so he thinks I’m not too eager”

“She flaked on our date, but maybe I have another chance with her” (spoiler alert, buddy: you don’t)

Bargaining doesn’t coexist with self-respect

We naturally bargain with the world.

We exchange time and work for money.

We give up comfort for pain that hardens us.

We give up brief pleasures for long-term health.

Sexual attraction doesn’t work transactionally. It’s emotional and irrational, not logical and mathematical. You can’t reduce it to x thing = y level of attraction.

You can’t exchange self-respect for affection, only for attention.

If someone’s worth being with, you won’t have to bargain for their affection or their attention.

Image result for man begging woman
He forgot to pay the monthly $69.99 fee for her affection

If someone’s genuinely attracted to you, don’t you think they’d be showing it? Don’t you think they’d react warmly to you instead of keeping you guessing about what they want?

People get stuck in the sin of bargaining because they assume it’s how the dating world works. They haven’t had the proper guidance on how to express their emotions in healthy ways.

Dating can and does work that way, but only for emotionally unhealthy people.

Bargaining can lead to sex, dates, and relationships, but those will be built on transaction and neediness, not the honesty and mutual attraction that emotionally healthy people build relationships on.

Bargaining includes:

  • Texting someone multiple times when they don’t respond
  • Wearing clothes as a status symbol, not as a reflection of personality and lifestyle
  • Looking up attraction-building tactics instead of assuming your honest self is good enough
  • Speaking or behaving dishonestly with the expectation of a positive reward

That last point is especially important. I’ll write an entire post about it.

Instead of bargaining, do this:

Escalate pre-existing attraction

You don’t get to decide who you’re attracted to or who’s attracted to you.

Image result for attraction
Two conventionally attractive people being conventionally attracted to each other.

All you can do is test the attraction and escalate it.

That means making a move, then seeing how the other person responds to it.

If they respond warmly and receptively, you can keep going for them.

If they respond coldly and unreceptively, don’t.

If they respond neutrally, treat them as if they’re unreceptive. You should go for someone who’s enthusiastic about you and unafraid to show it, not for someone who’s “meh” about you.

Testing attraction, being unapologetic about going for what you want, and having solid boundaries will be 20% of your success in the dating world.

The other 80% is who you are outside of dating. When you need sexual partners to have a solid sense of self, unhealthy neediness arises.


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