Archive for Monday, March 9, 2009


Women fake when flirting

March 9, 2009


A new Indiana University study finds that some women are extremely good at faking it.

By “it” we mean interest in a man. (What, you thought we meant something else?) They flirt with him, and yet they are thinking: “I wish this guy would just leave me alone. I can’t stand the sight of him.”

For the study, published last month in the journal Psychological Science, 54 college students were asked to watch speed-dating sessions recorded in Germany, then were asked how each party felt toward the other. None of the observers spoke German, forcing them to judge the daters by body language and vocal tone.

Turns out the observers were pretty good at judging how the men felt but almost uniformly terrible at figuring out what some of the women were thinking.

Specifically, some women seemed to be saying, “I’m interested,” and yet they were not, according to what they later reported.

“Both genders had trouble reading what the women were doing,” said Skyler Place, a psychology doctoral student at Indiana who co-wrote the study.

Place said there is some evolutionary rationale for the behavior. Women have a lot more riding on picking the right guy, because a bad choice could mean having that man’s baby. So women could be acting coy to get men to open up more, thus revealing anything that could make him a bad choice, Place said.

It’s also possible American college students just aren’t good at reading the body language and inflections of German women.

Maybe the real question is: How do you say, “Look, I’m just not that into you” in German?


igby 9 years, 2 months ago

One good thing about porn is that you can look at her like she's a virgin, an unblemished Venus without fought and you don't have to listen to her clammerings, and that in it's self, is what men are looking for. Now in reality, in dating and in relationships, the more her mouth moves and the stuff that comes out of it quickly begins to turn you off to the point that those blue little pills won't help anymore. To stay with her after this is a life of lying to yourself and to her. Dishonesty then breeds a distorted existence and your soon to fall victim to your lustful need to look at porn and pretend that there is a light at the end of the tunnel and that your fantasy does possibly exist and may or could come true. But then, suddenly you find yourself in a sea of fantasy fishes where all women look better to you that your mate. Then you try to distract yourself with other hobbies like sports and just about anything else. Drinking, drugs and soon your in a barrel of sea fishes that all look good to you. That is, until they open their mouth. Lol.

igby 9 years, 2 months ago

That's why all those cheesy porn flicks have cheesy music playing loud so you can't hear what anyone is saying. Lol.

Hawkdoc52 9 years, 2 months ago

Just remember - women can fake flitrting/orgasims, men can fake entire relationships.

classclown 9 years, 2 months ago

Why do women fake orgasms?

Because they think we care.

BigPrune 9 years, 2 months ago

Young college students trying to read flirting body language from foreigners.....sounds like a GREAT study. I wonder how much grant money was allocated for that one? Too much, I'm sure.

It's almost like trying to learn sex education from a college student.

OldEnuf2BYurDad 9 years, 2 months ago

I'd like to hear a woman (not a German one) explain this. To me, this is just creepy. I'm not at all into you, but don't have the "balls" to admit it? I'd rather extend our mutual agony with a lot of false interest? I am leading you to ask for a date, when in fact that's the last thing I want?

Some woman needs to explain how this is NOT insane.

Shane Garrett 9 years, 2 months ago

Oldenuf2BurDad, Asking a woman how something is not insane? Are you kidding me. They cannont even explain themselves. They want to be taken care of, but be assured that they themselves are self-suficient. (or so they want to believe.) I am wondering how my ex-girlfriend, is going to survive after I shut the gas off in her apt., that I was paying . But, I suppose a women never jumps ship unless she knows there is a life raft in the water. And to think they now out number men in the workforce. SCARY!

KansasPerson 9 years, 2 months ago

Oh boy! A silly study followed by a train of sexist comments! This is going to be a fun thread to visit later in the day.....

75x55, I totally agree -- what a dumb waste of money. I'd have to read the study to be sure, but it sounds like the design was full of flaws. Just a silly thing meant to get a rise out of people (and it looks like it's working).

OldEnuf -- how do you expect anyone to be able to explain the body language and communication norms in a culture that they're not a part of? Why do you assume that all women even understand one another?

Other posters -- grow up and meet some real grown-up women and men. Some of us are not in a position where we have to fake anything. Some of us don't build a relationship on having to lie or to believe someone's lies. Some of us actually care about what other people have to say when they "open their mouths." In other words, some of us are grown-ups. Feel free to join us at any time that you're ready!

jafs 9 years, 2 months ago


It may be flawed, but it's interesting.

The participants were clearly able to "read" male body language much more accurately.

If women (not all, of course) generally tend to flirt when they're not interested, that would mislead men quite a bit.

Seems to me a behavior that ought to be changed.

HermioneElliott 9 years, 2 months ago

I am not buying any of this. I don't believe that women flirt. It is just that some men think that every word and every gesture is leading to sex. I would think it quite horrible to be a man and have my entire life decided by my sexual self. I am not a lesbian. I am not a man hater. I just don't "get it."

Chris Ogle 9 years, 2 months ago

What?? I can't believe it... Women flirt even when they are not interested??? Yep, said the wise man.... since the beginning of time, women have been acting, and men have been seeking action.

Then you mean both men and women are faking it?, I asked The wise man smiled.... and said, You have a long road ahead little grasshopper. When you reach my age, you will find your answer.... that is, if you can remember the question.

alm77 9 years, 2 months ago

Oldenuf, we don't want to hurt their feelings. It's not that complicated. We "play nice" (which, btw is always misinterpreted as flirting) until we can move on. Simple.

OldEnuf2BYurDad 9 years, 2 months ago

"Oldenuf, we don't want to hurt their feelings. It's not that complicated. We “play nice”"

Doesn't in occur to you that "playing" in relationships is hurtful? There is no such thing as playing nice. There is sincerity, and there is insincerity. Insincerity is never nice.

jayhawklawrence 9 years, 2 months ago

How do they know that the men are not still lying to the researchers?

Men can fake on a macro level while women are good micro level fakers.

In fact, men usually start believing their own BS which is why they probably did not know how to answer the questions.

alm77 9 years, 2 months ago

I wasn't talking about relationships. I was talking about everyday interaction. Besides, being nice isn't the same thing as being insincere. I sincerely don't want to bruise a man's ego.

All women are taught that although men are tough enough to fight fires, patrol even the worst neighborhoods and go to war, their egos are their Achilles heel which much be handled with care lest they fall into a deep dark depression, feel completely useless and call off all of their productive heroics. We must encourage them, lest they fail us all. Now, whether there is any truth to that (I suspect there is some) may be another story.

denak 9 years, 2 months ago

I don't buy the whole evolutionary rationale. I think the reason behind this is that women, in most cultures, are taught from a very young age to be "pleasing." We are taught to be polite..that being aggressive or outspoken is rude and unladylike. So, even when we are in a social situation where we may not be "into" the guy, that conditioning kicks in so even though we don't like him, we still try to be overly polite so we don't hurt his feelings because after all, we all know how fragile the male ego is. Dena

Chris Ogle 9 years, 2 months ago

commentator_on_the_axe (Anonymous) says…

…and Adam a fool to nibble.

I thought it was Eve that had the nibples

Kryptenx 9 years, 2 months ago

Very well stated Pywacket. I'm a male, but everything you said seems true through my own personal observations.

kmat 9 years, 2 months ago

Py explained this correctly. As soon as I read this stupid article I was thinking about us women giving out fake numbers because with so many guys you play nicely just to get them to move along.

And man Igby - could you be a little more bitter? I think you need to get out of your little porn world and have some real interaction. Unless you prefer yourself and lotion over a breathing, living person. Maybe you do.

Classclown - women only fake orgasms if the guy sucks in bed and you can't get rid of him. Some of you poor guys just keep on trying, even though you don't know what you're doing. Just easier to get rid of you and nicer than flat out saying you suck, go home.

Thank gawd I have an awesome husband. I just need to read comments from the men on here to know how wonderful he is.

Jersey_Girl 9 years, 2 months ago

I confess I've been accused of being a compulsive flirter. I flirt with everybody, male and female. I'm not bisexual; flirting is just my form of social interaction. All the reasons listed above are valid reasons why I flirt. I'm not sure that observing speed-dating is the way to interpret flirting fairly. In that situation, one is fairly forced into playing nice, thus being interpreted as flirtation. I think in "real" situations, fake flirting is often a defense against having a scene. And before all you guys get huffy about women fake flirting and handing out fake numbers, think about how many of you have asked for our digits with no intention of ever calling.

Jersey_Girl 9 years, 2 months ago

Like men really care if the apple is fake or not!

alm77 9 years, 2 months ago

Gee, Marion, maybe that's because women are reminded every freaking day that "real" is never good enough. Even the most beautiful women are "perfected" with airbrushing. We cannot live up. It's not possible. Men don't want a woman, they want something fake.

spankyandcranky 9 years, 2 months ago

Marion -- PLEASE! Not all women are fake, usually, it's the ones who would prefer money over a real relationship who are. Sounds like you've been dating too many strippers.

Possibly, one poorly done study is getting too much serious consideration. How can studying one speed-dating session (from another culture, no less) produce accurate theories on gender tendencies for the whole world? No two people (even if they're both women from the same country) are exactly alike. So if some women flirt insincerely, maybe we should ask THEM why they do so, instead of assuming that all women fake everything.

WhiteDog 9 years, 2 months ago

The fake phone number I used in college was 241-7211. Get it? Two for one, 7 to 11. I had completely forgotten about that. Good times.

Christine Anderson 9 years, 2 months ago

Why not fake "it"? Men have been faking everything since time began. Ha!

KansasPerson 9 years, 2 months ago

I hope flamingdragon keeps up with the fake "Engrish" because it's really amusing!

Marion, stop trolling -- it's immature!

The rain falling outside is more interesting than a troll, frankly. You may think you're entertaining yourself, but what does that really say about you?

HermioneElliott 9 years, 2 months ago

I was not raised in Kansas so I was never taught to be nice to men because of their ego problems. I grew up in a feminist household where men and women were seen as equal. So, I have never had a problem saying, take a hike. I have had men as friends whom I could talk to because we had interests in common. There are men that think of women as sex objects, cooks, housekeepers, etc., but not all. The Harry Potter books are the best example of what true, good friendship can be.

Richard Heckler 9 years, 2 months ago

Whatever you give a woman, she will make greater. If you give her sperm, she’ll give you a baby. If you give her a house, she’ll give you a home. If you give her groceries, she’ll give you a meal. If you give her a smile, she’ll give you her heart. She multiplies and enlarges what is given to her. So, if you give her any crap,

be ready to receive a ton of poop.

Commenting has been disabled for this item.