How to... avoid the traps women set

Women aren't content just to be happy. Their brains are wired differently than ours - they crave conflict, drama and instability. They like to start fights over nothing. Because they need and want to be constantly reassured, they thrive on insecurity.

They are illogical and emotion-driven creatures. This is why they test men by constructing damned-if-you-do, damned-if-you-don't traps to put men's commitment, loyalty and motives on trial.

Most of these traps come packaged as innocent questions or offhand remarks. Innocent? Dream on. In fact, they're designed to make a man fail, and woe to you if you do because the punishment for failure is merciless.

Tender trapping may be a ridiculous and childish game that women force men to play, but there's no way you can avoid it, so the trick is to sidestep her booby traps.

"What are you thinking?"

A classic. Women are like little children - they believe that the sun and universe revolve around them. So when a woman asks this question, what she really means is, "Are you thinking about me right now?". Her female psychology drives her to imagine that she dominates your thoughts 24/7. Never mind that she's not thinking about you; what’s on her mind is buying the 147th pair of shoes she doesn't need.

Stupid responses:

  • "I was wondering what time the game starts"
  • "Have you seen that new chick who moved in across the hall?"
  • "Beer"

Smart responses:

  • "I was just thinking how pretty you look today"
  • "I was just thinking what a lucky guy I am to even know you"
  • "I was just thinking about that time we went to [insert memorable relationship event here] and what a great day we had"

"Do you think I'm fat?" (aka "Do I look fat in this dress?")

What she’s really asking is, "Do you still think I’m sexually attractive, even though I haven't seen the inside of a gym in five years and sit around gorging on chocolate all day?". This is a tough one because she knows she's fat (otherwise, she wouldn't be asking the question in the first place) and she wants you to lie, but you can't be obvious about the fact that you're lying.

Stupid responses:

  • "Yeah, you could stand to lose a few"
  • "I’ve been noticing all that cottage cheese on your thighs lately"
  • "Compared to who?"

Smart responses:

  • Just look at her in utter amazement that she could even ask such a question.
  • Don't answer directly. Instead, say something like, "You’re the most beautiful woman I’ve ever seen"

"What are you attracted to, my brains or my body?"

This is female-speak for "Did you hook up with me just because I have big melons?". It's the perfect female trap. If you answer that it was her intelligence and sparkling personality that initially got you interested, then she’ll come back with, "Oh, so you think I'm ugly?" And if you mention her awesome rack, prepare to duck.

Stupid response:

  • Openly leering at her breasts while making grasping motions with your fingers

Smart response:

  • "You know what's so great about you, honey? You're the perfect combination of beauty and brains. Everything about you turns me on"

"If you could sleep with one of my friends, which one would it be?"

Oh, boy. This is a classic test-your-loyalty, damned-if-you-do, damned-if-you-don’t trap.

Stupid responses:

  • Wistfully answering "Monica" as your brain throws up images of a torrid threesome
  • Even worse is saying, "It would be a tough choice between Monica and Jennifer"

Smart responses:

  • "You're so beautiful that I wouldn't want to sleep with anybody else"
  • "I've never thought of any of your friends that way, so I really couldn't pick one"
  • Run for your life

"Do you love me?"

What she's really asking is, "Is this relationship going to end up in marriage or am I just wasting my time hanging out with you?". Never forget that women look at dating and marriage as businesses, and if she's not going to realise a future profit, then she will have no further use for you.

Stupid responses:

  • "I've grown very fond of you"
  • "That depends on what you mean by 'love'"
  • "I guess so"

Smart responses:

  • This is another time to cleverly sidestep a direct answer, so say something like, "You are the perfect woman. I love being around you"
  • Run

"How many women have you slept with?"

What's really going through her mind are questions like, "How could you possibly have had sex with anyone other than me?", "Do you still think about these women?", and "Were they better sexual partners than I am?".

Stupid response:

  • Starting to count on your fingers, then moving on to your toes

Smart response:

  • "I can't remember, dear, because since I met you, no one else matters"

These are just a few of her traps. She has a lot more in her arsenal, so you have to be on your toes. If you feel guilty about lying to her, don't. Remember: She's not really looking for the truth - what she's really after is psychological reassurance. But just make sure that you're constantly vigilant or you just might fall in.

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