Know the “script” and you’ll catch its dedicated followers
“I treated her like a queen for over a year. I thought she was The One.
And then she dumped me. ‘It’s not you, it’s me. You are perfect. Just not perfect for me.’
WTF does that mean?”
“Everything seems to be going great. We’ve gone on three really nice dates and appear to be getting along. We always have a great time together, but then she’s tired or has to get up early and wants to go home. Then I don’t hear from her for two to three days. When we do finally talk, she’s all happy and friendly and acts like everything is great.
I can’t figure her out. Is she interested or not?”
Dear Dazed and Confused,
Allow me to explain The Rules: Time-Tested Secrets for Capturing the Heart of Mr. Right by Ellen Fein and Sherrie Schneider below. Then I suggest you both read it ASAP.
The Rules was a very influential New York Times bestseller. LOTS of copies sold, much to men’s chagrin. You may not have read the book, but I can assure you, most of the women I know have and its impact is inescapable. You’ve probably met one of these women. The following is just a sampling of The Rules’ Contents. As the title loudly hints, there are a lot of Do’s and Don’ts in dating—mostly Don’ts.
Does any of this sound familiar?
1 Be a creature unlike any other.
2 Don’t talk to a man first.
3 Don’t ask a man to dance.
4 Don’t stare at men or talk to them too much.
5 Don’t meet him half way.
6 Don’t offer to pay or go Dutch.
7 Don’t call him.
8 Rarely return his calls.
9 Always be the first to end a phone call.
10 Don’t accept a Saturday night date after Wednesday.
11 Don’t live with a man.
12 Don’t ever leave your things at his home.
13 Don’t ever let him leave anything at your home.
14 Don’t see him more than once or twice a week.
15 Stop dating him if he doesn’t buy you a romantic gift on a romantic holiday or anniversary.
16 Always end the date first.
17 How to act on Dates 1, 2, 3, 4, and so on.
The list goes on and on. There are twenty-four rules while dating and (sorry) it doesn’t end when you are married.
Find the man who loves you “enough.”
If a guy is really into you, he will have to prove it.
This book actually teaches women how to tease and string along a guy under the guise of mastering the art of the “takeaway close.”
I’d bet everyone reading this book has encountered a “Rules Girl.”
And do you know why? Because it works!
I know every man holding this book may not have read The Rules, but I’d bet most have met and even dated a “Rules Girl.” And when they did they immediately knew this was not going to be easy. At that moment they consciously or unconsciously make a decision…is she worth the chase?
“I think I’m in love!
I met this beautiful girl last week. She’s perfect! At first she wouldn’t give me the time of day, but eventually she warmed up to me. I bought her a drink and we got to talking. But man, she made me work for every minute. She left the party early with her friends but as she was leaving, she gave me her business card.
So I called her the next day, and again on Friday. She’s hasn’t called me back.
Should I keep calling?”
Dear Hunter Cavemen,
Admit it, you love the chase. You love when you succeed in the hunt.
And your egos are easy to fan.
If you really think she’s The One, give it one more try. If you get her voicemail, be polite, be sweet and ask her for a date.
If she answers, DO NOT ask her why she didn’t call you back. Blow it off. Be light and friendly, and not overly eager. Keep the conversation short and simple. Come right out and tell her you’d like to take her out on a date. Make your intentions clear. Offer her a Saturday night dinner date.
If she still resists, if she doesn’t offer an alternative plan, you might be barking up the wrong tree. Find a new dream.
“Rules Girls” know how to fan those coals. They are on a mission and they believe the “Rules” work. You can’t assume that just because she shared a drink with you, or gave you her business card, that she is overly interested in you. You see, “Rules Girls” put all men through the tests. Sounds like she may be following Rule #8 – Rarely call him. She believes that if you really like her you’ll call back. And to test it, she may ignore your calls a few times.
And from her perspective, she’s right. These techniques will help her find a man with true intentions; a man that is willing to commit and willing to jump through hoops for her. However, there is absolutely no guarantee that on the other side of that hoop-jumping there will be a woman that loves you.
Think of Scarlett O’Hara. If you haven’t ever seen the movie Gone with the Wind, you really must add it to your Netflix queue rent or stream it right away. All you have to do is watch the first thirty minutes and you’ll get the idea. In one of the opening scenes, the heroine Scarlett is flirting with all the boys and asking them to sit with her at the BBQ. She does all this to make her true love, Ashley Wilkes, jealous.
Now fast-forward about 150 years.
That’s a “Rules Girl” in action. She’s classy, educated, successful, sophisticated, charming, flirtatious, but always aloof. A man may never know where he stands with a “Rules Girl” until she’s accepting a ring or breaking up with him. Often no matter how well you play the game, you will lose in the end.
Even if you can treat her like a queen honeybee, if you aren’t her “Ashley Wilkes,” you had better be Rhett Butler. Otherwise, you’ll be just a passing phase.
But don’t worry. Now that you know her strategy, spotting a “Rules Girl” should be easy. The only question remaining is what to do?
I’ve been seeing her for six months now. I really think she could be The One, but I just can’t read her signals. If I tell her I think I’m falling for her it might scare her away. If she doesn’t feel the same way, I’ll look like a fool. What should I do?
“I’ve been seeing her for six months now. I really think she could be The One, but I just can’t read her signals. If I tell her I think I’m falling for her it might scare her away. If she doesn’t feel the same way, I’ll look like a fool. What should I do?”
Dear Cautious in Love,
Man up! You need to get a handle on the situation sooner rather than later. You can’t assume that just because you’ve been dating her for a few months, she sees you as anything more than a contender. You need to ask the hard questions. You need to find a way to gauge her interest in you. If you think you love her, you may actually have to be the first to say it.
Think Rhett Butler! Take her in your arms and tell her what you feel. Take the lead. That’s what she may be waiting for.
Here’s the really hard part if you’re put in such a position. One of three things will happen:
a) If she doesn’t return your feelings, ultimately the relationship is over. She will most likely be honest and break up with you.
b) She will say she needs more time. That means she hasn’t even considered it yet or you’ve got some more hoop-jumping to do. Not a good sign either way.
c) She will be thrilled and fall into your waiting arms.
If the outcome is a), you most likely won’t have much to say about it. She will be diligent about not returning your phone calls or email. Once a “Rules Girl” is done, she’s done. She moves on quickly with apparent ease. This may be heartbreaking. You may wish you never brought it up. But you did the right thing. Trust me on this.
If it’s b), you might have a shot at true love. But you need to raise the bar a little bit. If you are going to continue to pursue her, keep your heart in check. If she’s still not certain; if she still has some reservations; if she’s still uncertain after three to six months, honey, you should be too!
Now you might even be tempted to sell out and settle for less. Don’t! Every moment you spend with her will be time wasted.
If it’s c), you’re probably not wasting your time. But you still need to give it extra time. Simply be in a committed monogamous relationship for several months. Maybe even a year. Now that she knows you are serious, the walls should come down. She should be more open and receptive. She will slowly allow you into her life, family, friends, and home. She will drop many—but never all—of “The Rules” and you should feel a noticeable change in her reactions to you.
She knows how I feel. She says she feels the same way, but I still get the feeling she’s holding something back. I still haven’t met her friends. I still haven’t met her son. I still feel as if I’m doing all the work. I just don’t know how long I can keep this up. It’s beginning to feel like she is just using me. By now she should know how she feels about me.
Dear Hopeful Romantic,
You’ve done your best and passed every test. Now is the time for you to come up with a few “Rules” of your own. For instance, does she ever make you a romantic dinner? Does she openly express her affection for you? Does she start returning your f#@^!ng calls?
TIP: Unless you see a noticeable change in her commitment to YOU, you should be cautious. Don’t go running out and buy a ring. Hold on to your heart and your wallet until you know it’s real.
Watch for the Warning Signs
Too many hoops and rules
She’s always aloof and slightly unavailable
You’re doing all the work
You fall for her, hard and fast!
The Rules, when properly played, do work.
Be careful, this girl may break your heart.
What to take away:
If you think you’ve got a “Rules Girl,” find the movie Gone with the Wind and watch the opening scenes.
Definitely read The Rules cover to cover. (Relax, it’s a quick read.)
If you want her, you’ll have to follow “The Rules.”
If you love her, be Rhett Butler!
You should have a few “Rules” of your own.
You can’t assume anything with a “Rules Girl.” It’s best to get a handle on the situation sooner rather than later.