14 Clear Signs He’s Playing Mind Games With You

signs a guy is playing mind games with you

Do you think a guy is playing mind games with you but you’re not sure if your instincts are right?

It can be confusing to know when a guy is playing with your emotions or if he’s just not interested in dating you.

The truth is some guys are really good at manipulating women and getting them to do what they want without ever committing fully.

And if you’re not smart, you won’t know that you’re with a time waster who’s not ready to build a serious relationship with you.

Luckily, there are certain ways to verify if you’re with a player and we’ll take a look at some obvious signs a guy is playing games with you.


One of the most common signs a guy is playing mind games with you is that he’ll send you mixed signals.

If you want to know if the guy you’re dating is a manipulative person, here are 14 signs you need to watch out for:

1. He claims to be busy all the time

If you’re dating on a regular basis and your boyfriend goes several days without texting you, this is a clear sign he’s playing mind games with you.

Yes, we’re all busy, but if he rarely answers within minutes and takes up to 24 hours to respond, he’s definitely playing games. No one is THAT busy!

A surefire to know when a guy is trying to manipulate you is that he’ll view your stories but won’t respond to your message.

He knows you know that he saw your story. He wants you to wonder about him and why he hasn’t responded to you yet.

He can either be doing this to get you to chase him or to test you and see if you will get mad.

If you call him out on it, he’ll say he was busy and make it seem as if you’re wrong for even bringing it up.

If it seems difficult for him to make plans with you and you feel like you have to force the issue all the time, that’s a sign he’s not ready to date you, says Tracy Crossley, Behavioral Relationship Expert.

signs a guy is playing mind games with you

2. He shows you affection only when he wants to sleep with you

Does your boyfriend say he is not dating anyone else but is unavailable a lot of the time and only shows you affection when he wants to get laid?

That’s a sign he’s just stringing you along.

Someone who wants to date you will show an interest in your life and be willing to engage in regular couple activities.

He won’t ghost you for days and resurface whenever it suits him.

When a guy only sleeps with you but doesn’t take you out and you want something more yet he remains noncommittal, he’s obviously playing mind games with you.

He’s putting in low effort so you think there is a chance when there really isn’t.

3. He gives you the silent treatment after an argument

In a healthy relationship, couples argue, get mad at each other, and settle their conflicts quickly.

However, if a man is playing mind games with you, he’ll sulk and ignore you for several days when you have a disagreement.

You won’t hear from him until you’re ready to apologize even if you’re not really at fault.

Men who do this are being manipulative and trying to gain the upper hand when you’re in pain, according to Dating Expert, Lucia Demasi of The Art Of Love.

4. His actions don’t match his words

If a guy is very flirty or complimentary and seems to be interested with his words but then doesn’t make an attempt to see you, he’s obviously toying with your feelings.

When words don’t align with actions, always believe the actions. Men speak with their actions more than their words.

A guy who is really into you will make the effort to see you on a consistent basis because he misses you and wants to spend more time with you.

signs a guy is playing mind games with you

5. He blows hot and cold

Another way to know when a guy is playing mind games with you is that you’ll be confused about your relationship status.

For example, when people ask about your boyfriend, you won’t know how to respond because you’re not sure if you are actually dating or are in a situationship.

As the old saying goes, if he likes you you’ll know it, if he doesn’t, you’ll be confused.

A guy who is interested in dating you will make it very clear that he likes you and wants to get to know you better. He won’t be on and off with you.

He’ll also define your relationship early on by telling you whether he wants a casual fling or something long-term.

If he’s giving you mixed signals, it can either mean he’s not that interested or he’s deliberately playing games to get your interest level up.

6. He never calls or texts you first

A guy who’s interested in you will chase you but if he’s playing games he’s going to try to get you to chase him by never initiating texts or calls.

When men like you, they’ll do a lot of nice things to try to win you over. They’ll call you throughout the day, text you every morning, and take you out on regular dates.

If you’re always the one who contacts a guy first or plans the dates, that’s not a good sign.

Poor communication from a guy shows his lack of interest to be in a serious relationship with you.

7. He intentionally tries to make you jealous

When a man is cheating in a relationship, he would try to hide it as much as possible from his girlfriend.

However, if he talks or flirts with other women in front of you, he’s probably doing it to get a reaction and that’s a sign of manipulation.

A guy who wants to date you will not entertain other women or try to make you jealous by flirting openly with every girl on the street.

8. He still has his dating profiles up

A guy who is serious about you and wants to take things to the next level will usually take his profiles down without you asking or if you ask, he’ll take them down immediately.

If they’re still up, it means he’s not serious about you and is considering meeting other women online.

signs a guy is playing mind games with you

9. He stands you up and acts as if nothing happened

Another clear sign a guy is playing games with you is that he’ll be indifferent about your personal affairs and won’t want to be deeply involved in your private life.

For instance, when you invite him out to a social outing or date, he’ll not show up and then act as if it isn’t a big deal when he knows how important the event meant to you.

A guy who consistently stands you up or arrives late at social gatherings doesn’t value you and isn’t ready to be in a committed relationship with you.

If he cares about your feelings, he’ll let you know beforehand if he won’t attend or he’ll try his best to arrive early.

10. He hides your relationship from the public

Another big sign a guy doesn’t want to date you officially is that he’ll ask you to keep your relationship secret and won’t want people to know that you’re together.

If he doesn’t want to go places to be introduced as your boyfriend and never seems to want to meet your friends, family, or co-workers, nor does he introduce you to anyone in his life, that’s a huge red flag.

When a guy takes you seriously, he’ll announce his love life on social media and introduce you to all his loved ones because he’s happy to be with you.

Even if you don’t meet his family members right away, he’ll show you to his close friends and be proud to be with you anywhere you go.

11. He compares you with his ex

When someone wants to manipulate you into behaving the way they want, they’ll compare you with others and make condescending comments about your behavior, appearance, or life choices.

For example, if your boyfriend compliments you on your outfit and then comments on something about an ex, that’s a red flag.

If he says something like, “My ex used to wear heels all the time, it made her legs look good. Maybe you want to consider wearing heels?” he’s clearly playing mind games with you.

signs a guy is playing mind games with you

12. He invalidates your feelings

A guy who trivializes your feelings and is inconsiderate toward you doesn’t have your best interests at heart.

If your boyfriend constantly says you’re crazy or too sensitive, and dismisses anything you say, he’s invalidating your feelings, which is a sign of manipulation.

He’s downplaying your concerns so he won’t have to face the truth or deal with your intense emotions because he’s not fully invested in the relationship.

13. He threatens to hurt himself if you ever leave

This is one of the tactics master manipulators use to trick their romantic partners into staying with them even when the relationship is not healthy or happy.

If a guy tells you that he feels a soulmate connection with you and that he can’t leave without you when you’ve only just met, run for your life and never look back.

In a healthy relationship, both partners have the right to leave anytime they feel it’s no longer working or they need a break to sort things out.

Emotionally mature people don’t force, coerce, or threaten others to do what they want.

Any guy who tells you he’ll hurt himself if you leave is not an ideal partner for you and is trying to manipulate you.

14. Your gut tells you something is off

Do you have a gut feeling that the guy you’re dating is manipulating you? 

It’s a good idea to listen to your instincts when you’re in a new relationship.

The gut has the most neurotransmitters of any part of the body and can warn you of possible danger.

According to scientific research, when it comes to personal decisions and matters of the heart, intuition is seldom wrong.

If you feel that he’s playing mind games with you, he probably is and you’ll be wise to end the relationship before it’s too late.


When a guy is playing with your emotions, you’ll feel it in your gut and you’ll notice a lot of red flags in your relationship.

From being too busy to connect with you and keeping your relationship secret to flirting openly with other women, these are all tricks players use to keep you entangled with them.

If you spot any of these warning signs in your love life, it means your boyfriend is not ready to commit to a serious relationship with you at the moment.

You can choose to talk to him about his irresponsible behavior or break things off entirely for the sake of your mental health and emotional well-being.


Recommended Reading:

15 Crystal Clear Signs He Pretends To Love You

How To Tell If You’re In A Fake Relationship

17 Clear Signs He Doesn’t Want A Relationship With You

10 Obvious Signs He Still Has Feelings For His Ex

About The Author

Jennifer Dagi
 | Blog

Jennifer Dagi is happily married to her best friend and the love of her life.

As a relationship coach, she is passionate about helping couples build healthy and happy relationships.

She strongly believes communication and intimacy are the most important ingredients for building a successful relationship.

Join her on a fabulous journey to improve your love life one step at a time and don't forget to subscribe for weekly blog updates.

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