If you don't know by now that dating is a game, you are either in denial, or you're the world's most hopeless, romantic sap (with a lot to learn).
The truth is, dating is a game. The men who have “game" have their ways of playing, and the women who have “game" have their ways, too.
Sometimes, you win. Sometimes, you lose. Sometimes, you draw even. Some people may even have game without being aware of it.
So, who is the girl who has game? She's the girl who always seems to win. She's the girl whose love life resembles more of a calculated chess game than an abstract, "What the f*ck is happening?" painting.
She is the girl who gives relationship advice. She doesn't ask for it.
She's the girl who is always in power, and most importantly, she's the girl who knows when the game is coming to an end.
As Mae West says,
A dame that knows the ropes isn't likely to get tied up.
These are the 10 ways you can tell you're dating a girl who knows what she's doing:
1. She is confident.
The girl with game has supreme confidence in who she is. She doesn't compare her physique, achievements, age or status to other women. She knows there are 3.5 billion women in this world, and yet, there is only one of her.
She doesn't flinch if she finds out your ex was a model or CEO. She is who she is, so you can either take it or leave it.
2. She has self-esteem.
The girl with game is the girl who knows how she should be treated. She is the one who breaks up with her boyfriend or husband if he cheated or demonstrated negative and unhealthy behavior.
She is the girl who notices the red flags right away, and she doesn't delude herself in an attempt to prolong the relationship. If she doesn't give herself sh*t, why would she take it from someone else?
She is her own best friend.
3. She doesn't chase or pursue you.
The girl with game reciprocates contact. She doesn't initiate it.
You won't be getting a text from her at 2 pm on a work day while she's at the office. You won't be getting a phone call from her on a school night when she has to study for finals.
You won't be hearing from her on a Friday or Saturday night because she will be out, socializing and having fun with her squad.
The girl with game knows she doesn't have to chase a man. He knows she exists, and if he wanted her in his life, he would make it happen.
Over and out.
4. She doesn't call or text you all the time, but she accepts dates.
The girl with game isn't about to give all her time to a man she's just met. He is nothing more than an attractive male who asked for her number. That's it.
She is wise enough to know you don't give your attention to any man who hasn't earned it yet. However, she is open to being pursued.
She might not text you every day or call you back right away, but if you ask her out (in advance), she will gladly accept.
5. She's mysterious.
The girl with game is elusive in character, especially in the early stages of dating. She says enough to answer your questions, but never to the point of disclosing private information.
She'll tell you she had a wonderful meal at the best French restaurant in the city, but she won't tell you who she went with. She'll mention she moved from Los Angeles a few years ago, but you won't know why. You'll know she paints, but she won't tell you where her art is displayed.
She's like a Russian doll. Her personality, career, family or social life and personal enrichments all come out slowly, after you two have spent time an appropriate amount of time together.
6. You are unsure of how she feels about you.
The girl with game is going to reciprocate enough attention for you to know she's a presence in your life, but not enough for you to know you have her. You'll feel like she is on the fence.
After all, she isn't texting or calling you non-stop, she isn't initiating dates and she isn't tagging you in Instagram photos or Tweeting at you. If you want to know how she feels about you, you'll have to simply ask her directly.
7. She's kind.
The girl with game is a quality girl. This means she is attractive and kind, hot and nice.
She isn't using you for free drinks, free meals or entertainment. She isn't being manipulative to see what she can get out of you.
She only gives her time and attention to men she likes or wants to get to know, but her standards are in check. The last thing she wants to do is appear eager, needy or aggressive.
She doesn't want to be in a situation that might open the door to unrequited love.
8. She's sexy without trying.
The girl with game is sexy, but in a subtle manner. You see her sexuality in her entire being without her even trying.
You'll see it in the way she walks in her stilettos, her sheer black tights, her natural hair, her soft, red, manicured hands and her coy, mischievous smile.
She is aware of the kind of lover she is, and she knows she will take you to paradise. But first, you have to prove yourself.
9. She has boundaries.
The girl with game isn't the girl who loses herself in love. She gives her time, affection, love and empathy to you, but not in excess.
She doesn't expect you to control her happiness, just as she doesn't want to control your happiness.
If you aren't interested in going to the ballet with her, she will go alone or with friends. If she doesn't want to see the UFC championship with you and your friends, she won't go.
She isn't afraid to say or hear the word "no." After all, she is diplomatic in relationships.
10. She doesn't contact you after you ghost or break up with her.
The girl with game has mastered the hardest skill in the game of dating: how to handle it when a man breaks up with her or ghosts her. Both situations are very hard, especially when you've unveiled and accepted the truth.
Someone you liked (or even loved) has decided he or she doesn't want to be in your life anymore. However, the girl with game knows there is a reason behind the "silence is golden" proverb.
The moment you break up with her (or the moment she realizes you ghosted her), she does the only thing that brings power back to her: She never speaks to you again.
She doesn't respond to your bullsh*t "I miss you texts." (You don't break up with someone if you're going to miss him or her.)
She doesn't drunk text you, wanting to know answers. She doesn't grovel, beg or go haywire.
Sure, she will cry to her squad. Sure, she will go through an internal grieving process.
But she will be damned if you know about it. Instead, she takes the high road, and — with supreme discipline and emotional intelligence — continues her life without you.
She then prepares herself to play the game with another contender who might be a better man for her.