Are You Stalking Or Persistent? How To Tell The Difference
If a girl gives you her phone number or throws a smile in your direction, it is a sure sign that she’s interested. That much is obvious. But where things go from there will depend on whether chemistry develops between you. The more subtle and evasive the girl the harder it is to tell if she’s really into you. She may have given out her number on a whim or smiled at you as an expression of harmless flirtation.
We have all been in this situation. The bulk of my own dating life occurred when the telephone conversation rather than the text message exchange was the way that pre-couples engaged each other. But very little has changed. It is still the case that you are bound to meet some girl who you find really attractive, and whose phone number you finally get only to have her ignore you or give you the run around.
How should you respond to such behavior? There is a school of thought that says it is better to let her go and move on. She is obviously a tease, its adherents will tell you, and is not worth your time. This way of thinking is much too simplistic. You should of course consider the conditions under which the object of your affection made her move towards you. If it was done while she was half in the bag at a party, then you have good reason to believe that her blowing you off is a sign that she probably doesn’t even remember you much less have an interest in dating you. However, if she showed interest while sober and serious, and did so in a way that was straightforward and sincere, then you should explore other options for getting through to her.
You should never think that she’s too busy to get in touch with you. Everyone—man or woman—makes the time when they want to see someone again. A more likely reason for her not getting back to you is that doing so is just not a priority—that is, she doesn’t care one way or the other if she sees you again. Nothing has happened to give her strong feelings of attraction or repulsion towards you, so why should she pay any attention to you whatsoever?
Your best move therefore is to put yourself in her way. Rather than relying on texting you must arrange things so that you can see her in person again. You must then make a decisive impression on her. In fact, it may take more than one or two run-ins to produce the right effect. And this is where things can get tricky.
Your persistence—your insistence on seeing her and being around her in order to press your case—can be seen as stalking. No man wants to be in this position because it is both embarrassing, and, if taken too far, criminal. So, you should establish criteria that will determine when you’ve crossed the line.
The most telling factor is her attitude towards you. If she welcomes your presence and it is obvious that she finds your attention flattering, then you are on safe ground. All women like attention; but some are particularly fond of having a man who dotes on them. I have never found it shameful to do this. The key, I think, is to be as laid back and subtle in your pursuit as she is in her coquetry. Your meetings with her should be as much about you as they are about her. Indeed, spending an evening or afternoon being charming, witty, and playful is a perfectly nice way of passing the time. You should do your utmost to make the experience one that you find nice and relaxing. This will lighten the mood and prevent any tension from rising between the two of you; and, as a consequence, she will continue to want to be around you.
Another important sign is the way her friends act when they are around you. If they seem at ease and even interested in you themselves, then it means that nothing untoward has been said about you. However, if they are cold and stand-offish, then you should take that as a sign that your advances are not welcome. In this last instance, continuing to show up at places where you know your crush will be makes you a stalker.
Making this come out in your favor requires good judgment. Persistence shows that you have genuine interest in her. It demonstrates your character and determination. You can stop short of stalking by taking careful measure of how she responds to you. You must be watchful and sensible in your pursuit.
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About Christopher Reid Chris was born in Washington, D.C. and lives in Britain. He works as a blogger, essayist, and novelist. His first book, Tea with Maureen, has just been published.