Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Love and the Confusion of Persistence by Atala

Posted in: , ,

I recall a conversation I had with someone I know about how she met her husband. According to her, she was rather dismissive of him, and it didn't look like she would give him a second chance. But fortunately for him, he persisted - and she ended up seeing something in him which she obviously didn't see the first time. Whatever she saw, she must really have liked, because they're now married.

The conversation did make me wonder about the virtues of persistence. Should a man should be persistent or not in chasing a woman? It's fair to say that "faint heart never won fair lady", as the saying goes, and as the experience I relate above indicates?

 However, persistence can shade into harassment if the woman has made it clear in no uncertain terms that she is not interested in the man. So the rules seem to be simple - chase, but if she says no, back off. Right?

Erm. not quite. Sometimes, a woman is still making her mind up, and it means that she won't give an unequivocal "yes" because she is still wanting to get to know more about the man. So instead, she'll encourage him with an "I'm interested - keep talking" response.

The trouble is that sometimes, a woman may also give that response if she is not really be interested in the man, but she likes the attention that she is getting as he chases her. So the poor gets strung along until he realises that he's wasting his time, and thus, persistence is a bad thing here.

And that "no means no" rule? Again, not quite so simple. It's possible that when the guy first approaches the girl and she slams him with a big fat "no", maybe she's not in the mood to date. Maybe he didn't come with his A-game. Maybe her "no" really doesn't mean "no", and she wants to see how persistent he is. Whatever - he ends up with the "no".

The point is that if he figures out what exactly the problem is and re-presents the new improved version of himself in the right place at the right time, that "no" can be turned into a "yes". So persistence is a good thing here.

To help, I can only recommend the concept of the "stop loss". This is where the guy decides exactly how much chasing works for him - two days, two weeks, whatever - and if he does not get a specific response in that time, it's the end.

Simple, right? And elegant. But utterly impractical, if at the end of the period, his head is telling him to leave her, and his heart is tugging him back to her to continue waiting. Maybe men should wait instead for mind-reading technology to be developed to put an end to all this persistent confusion. Or maybe women can simply be more direct with men and quit playing games?


  1. Been there, done that!

    And to be brutally honest, I think some of the reasons why we keep the men guessing are:

    1. We're involved with someone else already, but thinking about leaving that person.

    2. We're not sure whether someone better will come along, so we kinda keep the man "on hold"

    3. Like you rightly said, we enjoy the attention of being wanted, even though we have absolutely no desire to become involved with the person.

    I'm not saying the above reasons are right, but someone's gotta tell the deep, dark truths sometimes.

  2. Sometimes, it's about "i'm not interested in dating you but we can be friends" but the guy could misconstrue this and keep trying

  3. I believe that perseverance can certainly produce result as long as the lines of being pushy, overbearing and downright annoying are not crossed.
    There's a way that a man can be a gentleman in waiting that impresses a girl.. Sort of like I'm in the horizon, not in your face but I'm hovering.. I don't know if you understand what I mean?
    But, like you said, a man should be able to know when to back off! As sometimes, a no will remain a no forever and ever amen!

    PS Can a second part of this article be done with girls being 'in-waiting' and when to give up on a man who is not interested!

    Thanks :-) xx

  4. haha yup, they need to wait for mind reading technology lol

  5. lol at mind reading technology.

    I see that Atala gave this some good thought though, and I agree with him mostly.

    1. Yep, she just might like the attention (been there)
    2. She might not be ready to date (been there)
    3. maybe there's something about his approach that just seems like he's stalking.

    The circumstances differ jare. but yes, persistence does pay in some cases...

  6. It happened to me recently and we are currently dating and might be heading to the altar if all goes according to plan.

    He 'chased' me for 14 months and I SAID A BIG FAT NO. I KEPT SAYING NO because I felt i had other options and those options failed then i took a second look at him and decided to give it a go. Now he gives me butterflies....when a year ago I could have spat on his face. It's called LIFE!

  7. It could be both ways. The lady either doesn't really like him (but maybe likes the attention she is getting) or any of the other reasons you mentioned. However, like you suggested, a guy should know how far he can go being persistent. I believe a lot of us ladies do like persistent guys even if we refuse to admit that to ourselves. Once dated someone who was on my case for about a year before I finally said yes. And boy he was PERSISTENT. Looking back, I do think I knew I liked him but maybe I was trying to "keep my options open". Maybe I just wasn't sure.

    Situations differ though. What works for A might not work for B. As long as it isn't bordering on stalking, I think a guy should be as persistent as he can be without being too pushy or intense. Got a case on hand now and am asking him to go all out. Please be persistent. Be in her face and not be in her face (try and balance it).

  8. Wow! Being a guy is hard work when it comes to romance.

  9. My now husband had to be a little persistent with me and I'm so glad that he did! I agree that at some point no means no and a guy will just have to back off but if he listened to me the first time I would have missed out on so much! Sometimes we don't realize what we have in front of us right away.

  10. Whoever said women don't know what they want might be on to something going by the female comments here. Atala, you're a guy I think, you nailed it in this one.

  11. Its okay to be a little persistent. Let the girl make yanka small too. After all they said nothing good comes easily. That mind reading technology might come in handy as well lol.

  12. lol@anonymous' comment. I totally believe in faint heart never worn fair lady. Sometimes its your gentlemanly persistence that we need to knw you re really serious. How sure am i that you re not saying the same to Aisha and Iyabo? There is something sweet, assuring and wholesome in realising that someone has eyes for only you and is willing to wait for you to see sense...
    Men that are just testing waters. no real intentions
    Men that know they re neither hot or cold but keep hanging there
    Men that are scorching hot....stalkers, obsessives.

  13. I must admit I'm amazed at how many of you women saying that you put a man through a session of persistence before you said yes. Still, the man said "yes" in the end, so I guess it worked for you...

  14. ugh! why do we have to go through this? why can't I say " let's see how it goes" and just leave it at that till we both know. why all the games? (e dey tire lol)

  15. Kept my husband on the waiting list for about 5rs,we are now about only regret is that my kids would have been more older if I had given in earlier,but the main truth is that I had my eyes on other places but when it was not working out for me I quickly made a turn around.


Click Post a Comment to share your thoughts, I'll love to hear from you. Thanks!

*Comments on old posts are moderated and may take sometime to be shown. That's just because I want to see them and respond to you if necessary.