Study Says Men and Women Play Hard To Get To Test Loved Ones Commitment

Study Says Men and Women Play Hard To Get To Test Loved Ones Commitment

Treat them mean to keep them keen, tout scientists. Researchers at the University of Western Sydney and Singapore Management University say both men and women play hard to get in order to test their love ones’ commitment. The report cites sarcasm, flirting with others and withholding of sex among the most frequent of 59 tactics used by both genders to manipulate their partners.

Women have always been accused of playing hard to get just to annoy their male partners or prospective suitors. But scientists now believe there are evolutionary reasons for the tactics. Psychologists say women use the strategies to test their partners’ commitment and quality.

Reported in the European Journal of Personality, the study asked more than 1,500 women and men which “hard to get” strategies worked best. Women reported the most successful tactics included appearing highly self-confident, talking to others, withholding sex, being busy, teasing, flirting with others and turning down dates. And women were more likely to use the tactics than men. The researchers believe women’s proclivity toward the hot and cold tactics is their evolutionary way of trying to ensure a potential mate will stay with them once they have a child.

Phillip Hodson, author of “Men, An Investigation into the Emotional Male,” and fellow at the British Association for Counseling and Psychotherapy, told the Independent the study combines traditional and modern thinking.

The get her man in the 1950s movie, “The Pajama Game,” professional virgin Doris Day withholds sex until her underlying contractual demands are met,” Hodson said. “But psychologists and therapists would call this strategy outdated on the grounds that she’d most likely attract an incompatible male who would tire of her once the challenge had vanished.

[Image via Shutterstock]

Samantha Lile


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