How the hell do you know when you're being flirted with?

Kuilui

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I've never had a clue in my entire life. I find out way way way after that they were into me. I could've dated two cheerleaders, one in high school and one in college. I think that hurts the most lol. In all seriousness though I have had a lot of girls come onto me and I just never was aware of it until it was way to late. I really do not get subtlety at all. Hell I don't even get it when girls are being SEVERELY obvious about their feelings.

This one girl I barely knew just randomly gave me a hug and always tried to talk to me about anything she could think of. Turns out she was after a boyfriend. A girl I knew in college used to HUNT me down and make any kind of physical contact she could, chat me up, laugh at my stupid jokes. I walked away from her to. Really I could talk all day about my failings.

A lot of it was my total lack of self confidence. To my mind they were just being nice, to think anything further was so ludicrous my brain wouldn't even give it a single thought.

I never got flirting in any of its many forms and I probably never will.
 

Elfgore

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KOMega said:
According to people I know I apparently flirted a lot a couple years ago, so apparently just being a nice person sometimes is considered flirting.
Same thing happened to me. A girl accused a friend and I of flirting, just because we were talking to each other and laughing. Apparently a man and woman can't talk and laugh together without having feelings for one another.

But yeah, I can't help you. I'm a dense dude. Really dense. A girl skipped out on going to homecoming to go to a party I was going to. I didn't think anything of it until a mutual friend told me I was the reason she was going. Made me feel like an idiot. Of course I totally fucked up the eventual conflict and now she hates me.

I'm in the same boat as many other guys here. I wish girls were a little more outgoing with their feelings, especially towards us beta males. But I bet some girls think the same thing, so I can't really talk.
 

Childe

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Evil Moo said:
My approach is to assume there is no flirting directed at me at all and not waste any energy trying to interpret any vague and subtle signals there might or might not be, which seems to be serving me well enough thus far. If someone wants to express an interest they can say so directly. Not that it makes much difference to me either way, but the clarity would be nice so I can throw it back in their face and be done with it, should such a rare event occur in the first place.
This is me. I decided long ago that since I have no clue as to this flirting thing and I'm also really bad at reading body language, facial expressions etc that i would just assume at all times that no one is flirting with me. If they like me then they can flat out say it and if they don't want to because of some social rule then oh well I will move on until i find someone I want to embarrass myself for.
 

Kennetic

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I'm with all the other males here: I can't tell. I have no clue if a girl has any interest in me and the one time that I thought that one was, it turned out she was a lesbian so that should give you an overall idea.

To women: men don't pick up on subtlety, please be more obvious because we are idiots.
 

Ihateregistering1

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Haha, I sympathize with you OP. For many years, I always realized after the conversation/meeting that the girl was flirting with me, and then I'd kick myself for not acting on it at the time.

Honestly, you don't really know 100%, as a general rule the only thing I've found that is an almost certainty is if she goes out of her way to lightly touch you (arm, leg, etc.) or if she drops hints like "I really want to go to this new restaurant that just opened" (she's essentially giving you a good date idea). Besides that, you just gotta take the risk.
 

valkeminator

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I dunno about everyone else, but from my experience it totally depends - because verbally it can be considered to be a joke instead of flirting.

I'm more of a verbal person and at times yes I can notice the subtle visual cues - but I am more of the personality investigator type than watching for body movements and such. I guess language usage is more of my forte (although I'll admit I've been super rusty now days).

I guess if the topic is heavily implying on yourself and the person you are with - then its likely that's an attempt at flirting - especially when its something related to things you'd do together? (but having read some of the response here and personal experience - it can be just either a "people please"/Diplomatic response or just a joke).

At the end of the day however I prefer a little bit of honesty, It makes things easier on both sides. However, I'll admit that flirting is fun when the timing and execution is right! I prefer to "strike" when the situation presents itself - not at random.
 

zerragonoss

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I guessing your problem is the same as mine and most the people in this threads. That is not that filtering is subtle and hard to see, or that people are bad a noticing these things, some are, but for most of us here I think the hard part about it is accepting its possible. I quite a bit more observant lately and I have noticed this more directly in just the thought pattern "she seems to be flirting with me but that's not possible, I must be wrong." The difficulty in knowing someone is flirting with after you have read lists with the hints, and when you just know how people act normally, is not seeing it but thinking its possible. Either just actively disbelieving as I am now, or just not thinking to look as the idea does not even cross your mind. It does not really matter how obvious the sings if you don't belive what they are telling you.
 

M0rp43vs

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Zanderinfal said:
That's the funniest thing I've read all week, but I feel guilty for laughing. Should I mention I know a guy who carries a rape whistle with him at all times because his parents don't trust him enough to go to high school and not get gang-raped? 'Cos that's a thing. Well, I may be exaggerating (heh), but that's the gist of it.
Was the guy either extremely androgynous or extremely hot that he'd get mobbed by screaming hordes of fans? Is he an anime character?

Don't feel bad about laughing about it. I'm extremely easy going and happy go lucky but apparently all those kung fu movies I grew up with mean I apparently can't make a facial expression other than "This man killed my master and now I must fuck him up" and "who farted". The amount of times I have to go "But I am smiling", "no I'm not angry", "my master is still alive thanks for asking" and "everything's fine officer, just a misunderstanding" everyday gets kinda annoying.

Also, in answer to the op, I remembered I had been clueless twice before. It's just that the time I found that out was always the time I left that social group.
Anyway, my favourite method of flirting is challenging my rivals to my flirtee's affection, her master or the flirtee herself to a fight to the death. But I am an old-fashioned romantic
 

Zanderinfal

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M0rp43vs said:
Zanderinfal said:
That's the funniest thing I've read all week, but I feel guilty for laughing. Should I mention I know a guy who carries a rape whistle with him at all times because his parents don't trust him enough to go to high school and not get gang-raped? 'Cos that's a thing. Well, I may be exaggerating (heh), but that's the gist of it.
Was the guy either extremely androgynous
Arguable, he'd probably say he's manly but he takes ballet lessons (Not that there's anything wrong with that) and everyone he's gone out with says he acts like a little girl. So yeah, probably.

M0rp43vs said:
or extremely hot that he'd get mobbed by screaming hordes of fans?
HAH! Nope. As a bisexual, he's pretty damn unattractive. To quote Yahtzee, I wouldn't touch him with a ten foot long barge pole held by someone else.

M0rp43vs said:
Is he an anime character?
Me thinks he likes to imagine that, but at the end of the day he'd probably just be that one computer guy from Kimpossible with half the personality. I'm not sure if it's entirely clear, but I don't really like that guy. He nearly died from an addiction to energy drinks a few months ago. Mind you, I'd still want him around, mostly because he's funny in the way a dog pissing in it's face is funny- endearingly so.
M0rp43vs said:
I'm extremely easy going and happy go lucky but apparently all those kung fu movies I grew up with mean I apparently can't make a facial expression other than "This man killed my master and now I must fuck him up" and "who farted". The amount of times I have to go "But I am smiling", "no I'm not angry", "my master is still alive thanks for asking" and "everything's fine officer, just a misunderstanding" everyday gets kinda annoying.

Also, in answer to the op, I remembered I had been clueless twice before. It's just that the time I found that out was always the time I left that social group.
Anyway, my favourite method of flirting is challenging my rivals to my flirtee's affection, her master or the flirtee herself to a fight to the death. But I am an old-fashioned romantic
Get this man an internet trophy, I vote this as the funniest post on this site in the last 2 years.
 

Someone Depressing

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I have the self-confidence of a deer that just got run over by a truck. If I do notice, I'll just ignore it until the person stops or goes away.

But, I do tend to notice is... sometimes. Well, I wouldn't really know if I didn't notice it, did I? It's sort of like the "the incompetent don't realise they are" argument.

Yeah, it can be pretty easy to tell. Breathing, stuttering, biting their nails/skin, general nervous tics and whatnot, are all pretty good signs.
 

Sandernista

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Spoonius said:
I'm not referring to blatant hitting (eg. "nice legs, what time do they open?"), but to the subtler clues that occur on a more regular basis. Vocalisation, language, stance, gestures, facial expressions, nervous tics, etc.

I'm evidently missing some key factor that's obvious to almost everyone else. I'm absolutely useless at "hit detection" and reading "expert" advice hasn't helped. I'd rather ask regular people about their own experiences.

So how do you recognise that someone's interested? How do you yourself flirt? Have you ever been clueless yourself?
I'm surprised this hasn't been posted, Dr. Doe has a pretty indepth explanation of contemporary American flirting:

 

The Rogue Wolf

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I'm "fortunate" enough to be as ugly as sin, so I don't even bother wondering if I'm being flirted with, because I know that anyone who does is probably just looking to get something out of me.
 

Gaijinko

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I have no clue whatsoever when someone is flirting with me. I spent a lot of my life overweight and bearded (come see the amazing full bearded twelve year old). Then I slapped myself in the face, got in shape and generally take care of myself and improved my socialization skills. I was prickly like my beard. A Woman that I knew from work took an interest but I was happily skipping along merrily in my own ignorance. Luckily I had sisters, sisters who would occasionally drop by at my work place and notice how she was around me and took me to one side and in their own words said "Either ask her out or go gay, either way touch someones privates". So my helpful contribution is this, sometimes having another woman look at the situation can help, maybe.
 

Tsun Tzu

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I can tell when I'm being flirted with.

It's very simple...

Step 1: Wait 1-10 years, think about it a lot, or be told by the person in question.

Step 2: Sob into your pillow in your empty queen size bed.
 

game-lover

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Let me know when you tell me. I'll be damned if I have an idea.

I'm willing to think it might be easier if you're interested too. Otherwise, it goes right over your head.

At least that's been my experience.
 

Carnagath

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shootthebandit said:
Theres 2 levels of flirting. Theres the playful friendly innocent flirt and theres the "I really want to bang you" flirt. Try not to get these confused
Yeah, good luck with that shit, it's impossible. I've had a girl kiss my neck with a bit of tongue and apparently I misunderstood it and it didn't mean anything, and I've learned that girls were into me who expressed absolutely zero interest in talking to me and acknowledging my presence in any way.
 

raeior

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One more for the no clue faction, yay!

A girl from my friend circle in high school asked me like 2 times a week if I could come over to her place to teach her chemistry because I was pretty good at it. Sure I'm glad to help! 2 years later...wait she didn't do it because she wanted to learn chemistry? It never occurred to me that she could be into me at all. I mean..why would she? It didn't help that I had a major crush on another girl at that time that was as clueless as me in regards to flirting. I guess the only more direct step I could have taken toward her would've been to visit her and rip her clothes off or something. After several friends told her how I felt (I was feeling miserable after it led nowhere for months) we talked over it, she just wanted to be friends, I was even more miserable and on the way home she asked me why I was so miserable (same day after talking through it)...yeah...fun times.

Oh well, with my last girl friend it worked out pretty well. Basically we both were clear on what we wanted, spent as much as possible time together, talked via phone like every other day. I still was completely unexperienced how to react but hey it worked out.

With another friend from university I'm still not sure what that was all about. I think she might have had an interest but the whole situation was really weird. A friend of her tried to get her together her with me (completely unbeknown to me) and she reacted like super aggressive toward her and also me at some point because she thought I had my hands in it or something? Sometimes I could talk just fine with her even about private things and all and sometimes she would just go "boom". Even a joke like playing Billiard and another friend saying some stuff like "you are together (in a team)" was enough to get her to explode. But she also reacted aggressive if anyone made compliments toward her while at other times claiming no guy would ever show an interest in her.

Another one was just a few weeks ago. A girl during a course I was overseeing (one of 8 supervisors each with a group of 12 students) was smiling when she saw me like every time and we sometimes both started grinning or laughing because of it. Was she flirting? I have no idea. Maybe? Maybe she just is a happy person and likes to smile/laugh? She seemed to be quite fluent with people in general so what do I know. Also even if...no idea how to go on from this. Asking her for her number or something during a course would be quite strange at least in my eyes (age difference would be only 3 years or so but still..). Then sometimes she left without saying goodbye or something and I was "yeah stupid you how could you think she was into you" and when she smiled it was like "Wow I'm feeling greaaaat".
 

Mr Fixit

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I'm actually pretty good at knowing when I'm being flirted with, it's not often, but it does happen. Being able to read body language has been very helpful in this aspect, though the fact that I am oblivious to practically everything is quite the pain in the ass. . Body language is a great way to tell if someone is interested or not so study up on that.

I was getting some smiles the other day, but my brain was elsewhere & I never struck up a conversation & she got in her car & drove off.

I've lucked up & met a few of the very rare women that make that first move, it really does simplify things ladies...

Skyrim gets it right, put on an Amulet of Mara & hit the bars...
 

Aramis Night

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I have a long history of obliviousness on this front as well. I once had a Gf list 10 women that she knew liked me. Her paranoia drove us apart sadly. I was positive that she was being paranoid about these female friends I had at the time. We broke up soon after since she wasn't willing to let me hang out with my friends ever. It turned out she was right. Within the month all of the women she mentioned made it clear to me that they liked me. I found out that they were actively trying to make my now Ex-gf jealous when I was with her actually made me cut them all out of my life. Sadly it was too late to fix the damage.

I also use to take people at their word, so if a female friend said anything along the lines of seeing me as a brother or not having any interest in me to anyone, I would consider my position with them solidified and never entertain anything further. Turns out every one of them that ever said I was like a brother eventually admitted to having a thing for me. So I guess perhaps many women have a thing for incest.

But on top of all that, I'm just as dense as most men. I honestly have no clue why any woman would find anything about me compelling or attractive. I always assume that women have higher standards. Most women are beautiful after all so why would they settle for less in someone else? With this always in the back of my head, I just generally act as a functionary around women and try to stay out of their way. I even lower my eyes when I pass them on the street and avoid looking in their general direction and avoid invading their personal space. It just seems more polite.

I usually find the only times women tend to be direct about their intentions, they are usually drunk. Or more likely that is what it takes for them to find me attractive. It's really just insulting at that point. I use to go to clubs a lot so I would have to just move and try to ignore the drunk woman. Makes me glad I don't do clubs very often anymore.
 

Sarah Kerrigan

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I feel as if it's whenever I play Magic the Gathering with people. They always are nice and ask 'oh what do you do outside of magic?' and I normally say comics, video games, ect. And Usually, I know when people are hitting on me when they start busting into their CoD Killstreak, or 'hey did you know this about this comic book character?' and they normally say it as if I didn't know that. It kinda irks me, but most people are nice about it.

I hope I didn't sound bitchy ;;