Just received the following email from a reader, who was kind enough to allow me to reprint here, preferring to remain anonymous. He asks:
I'm not sure if your one to give feedback to random readers of your blog but I was hoping I could get help with this girl. I met her at a party a week ago, and within about 5 minutes of meeting her I was making out with her. We leave the party soon after. I asked her to come back to my place and she declined because she had to get up early which I new was true. So I walk her back to her place and kiss her good night. Flash forward to this weekend where after a week of texting I get her to come over to a small party at my house. I play beer pong with her and talk with her somewhat but she seems very cold. I am able to touch her somewhat but when I do sexual things like touch her butt she moved my hand away. So she left my house pretty abruptly, and becuase I didn't want to see her go that easy I texted her the next day. She basically told me she didn't like me that much in the first place and doesn't want to talk to me anymore, very harsh! I don't know what I did to upset her so much. Also, is it possible to still see this girl again or is it done?
Ah, this sounds like something that used to plague me all the time when I was starting out. It feels super-confusing when it happens to you, too – why on Earth would a girl who really, really liked you one night suddenly pull a complete 180 and be cold to you the next time you saw her? It’s bizarre and mystifying to us, because as men we don’t act that way. Either we like a girl, or we don’t like her. We don’t really, really like her, and then suddenly we hate her guts and treat her like a leper. It does not compute with us.
What causes this reaction in women, though, is in fact the making of the most painful mistake you can realize you’ve made in seduction – having a girl who wanted you but with whom you missed the window to bed her in.
Escalation Windows and Auto-Rejection
An escalation window is the name for that period of time you have to move things forward with a girl. That is, it’s the moment where you can get a girl to talk to you, get her to move around with you, get her to go sit somewhere with you, get her to go home with you, get her to kiss you, get her to get intimate with you. And the thing with these windows is, most of the time, they don’t stay open long.
In social circle, these windows don’t stay open terribly long, and if you miss them you get slotted into the friend zone, which it’s always going to be a hell of a long slog to try and carve yourself out of and it’s always easier to just meet a new girl. Easier to just go buy a new drinking glass than try to glue together a shattered old one.
With a cold approach, or something close to it – any avenue really where you’re meeting women you don’t have strong social ties to and aren’t going to see on a reasonably regular basis – the window for escalation is even smaller, and women are less forgiving of failure to hit that window. Women you meet during cold approach often don’t have the social ties to still want to be nice to you after a window’s been missed; they’ll shut down and go cold and just pure resent you for not having given them what they wanted and needed. You become something of a reminder of their inability to get what they wanted.
When attainability drops too low – when a girl reaches a point where she feels like she just can’t get what she wants with you – she’ll go into something called auto-rejection, or self-rejection, which is where she, sensing that you don’t want her and won’t give her what she wants, will reject you first to prevent you rejecting her and her suffering that blow to her ego that accompanies rejection.
You can see this in yourself: have you ever gone up to talk to a girl, thinking, “Wow, she’s gorgeous!” only to have her shoot you down in a really cold way? You likely walked away, muttering something to yourself like, “Bah, who wants to have anything to do with a horrible person like that anyway?” That’s auto-rejection; she probably isn’t actually a horrible person, but now you think she’s bad and evil because it helps you justify why you aren’t with her. You aren’t with her because clearly there’s something wrong with her.
Women go through this too. If you take the example above from our reader, here’s a guy this girl was making out with in a party and whom she left the party with. Girls don’t leave parties with guys they’ve just met whom they’re only hoping to be friends with. She left the party because she wanted to sleep with him. When it didn’t happen, she most likely went home miffed at not getting what she wanted, went into auto-rejection, and started thinking to herself what a dreadful guy this guy she met was and how she didn’t actually like him at all.
Recognizing Auto-Rejection and Avoiding It
You know you’re dealing with auto-rejection when a girl who was previously very warm with you gets very cold. I remember this girl I really liked in college – she was this beautiful, smart Italian-American girl with a vivacious personality, a tiny waist, and the most perfect breasts I’d seen all year. Oh man, I had it bad for her. And I managed to flirt with her enough in class to win her over, and she started flirting with me pretty hard and even called me up one night to allegedly gripe about something in class and tell me that this was her cell phone number.
But this was back in the days before I’d even begun forcing myself out to meet girls, and I was still a big knucklehead when it came to women, and wasn’t sure what to do, so I did… nothing. And then the beautiful Italian girl just went ice cold on me. I’d run into her and try to flirt with her, same as I’d been doing, and she’d be dead serious with me and not warm and flirtatious and talkative like she used to be and she just had no time for me anymore. It drove me nuts, and never was able to fix it with her back then, but it forced me to start realizing that if you didn’t get a girl in a certain period of time, you’d lose her forever.
As noted earlier though, with girls you don’t know well, that time is not drawn out over months, as it was for me with that girl in my class I saw three days a week, but rather compressed into an evening, or hours, or sometimes even minutes. In “She Doesn’t Even Need to Know Your Name,” I mention a girl I left the bar I met her at with somewhere between 15 and 20 minutes after I’d first met her back in December. Which sounds like it must’ve been really easy, right? And indeed, it was very straightforward. But there were three moments in the quarter of an hour or so we spent together in that bar where an escalation window opened very briefly, and I leapt at it and moved things forward. Had I missed any of those three windows, we would not have slept together that night.
For instance, when I pulled her at the end, she asked me one question (“Where are you staying?”) after not having asked me anything else about myself since I first met her. My brain quickly ran through a few scenarios, and decided that if I tried to stay any longer and keep talking to her, the conversation wasn’t going to go anywhere, I’d miss the window, and she’d go cold and walk away, meet someone else, or go home. So, I stood up and told her to come with me and I’d show her the place I was staying at, and we went back there and became lovers.
The less a girl knows you, the more you must move fast with her. With girls in social circle, you can afford to dally a bit (though still not too long… if she’s on the market, it’s a safe bet that you’re probably not the only guy she’s available to, so if there’s another guy she likes who moves faster than you do, you’re out of luck); with girls you meet through cold approach, you’re afforded far less leeway.
You must move fast.
Moving fast and hitting escalation windows is the only way to avoid getting mired in auto-rejection. And it makes your life far easier, too: move fast with a girl who wants you, and you get together quickly, become lovers, and are happy together. Miss escalation windows with a girl who wants you, and suddenly she hates your guts, is acting cold to you, and you’re doing an extremely delicate balancing act simply trying to get her back close to the same level of warmth to you she had before when she was available to you and open to becoming yours.
It’s easier to buy a product when it’s still on the shelves than trying to get your hands on it somehow when it’s sold out and off the market and you’re scrambling around trying everything you can think of to get your hands back on it. You know the old phrase:
He who hesitates is lost.
We might rephrase it a bit here to say: “He who hesitates has lost the girl.”
Pushing for the Close
Back to our good reader. He did ask for the close and asked this girl who left the party to join him at home, but she declined, saying she was tired. So why did she still go cold on him?
What often happens with women is that they want to be able to be a little coy and say “no” a few times and have the man persist until they “break” and go along with him. They don’t actually break, of course; if they really didn’t want to go with him, they’re not going to go with him against their will just because he asked five times instead of two. This is what we discussed in the post on “The Last 5%;” pushing for the close in the end and steering things to success in that critical final juncture. The most painful failed seductions you’ll have are the ones where the girl was yours but you didn’t push for it at the end and she slipped through your fingers.
Getting intimate with a man is a big decision for most women, and big decisions are like this. People sometimes get cold feet even with things they really know they want to do, and it’s your responsibility to help them stick to what they want and steer them through the rough patches.
Think of a man about to get married who starts feeling unsure, or a couple about to buy a new car that get gun-shy right before they pull the trigger and sign the contract. Think the bride-to-be is going to stand there on her wedding day and tell her bridegroom, “Oh, it’s okay, we can just do this later and you can think about it,” or that the car salesman is going to take the pen away from the couple about to sign the contract and tell them, “You know what, you can always take some time and come back later and we’ll just do it then?” Of course not. Because what do you think will happen if they do? That’s right, the bridegroom probably will never marry the bride, and the couple probably will never buy the car. Even if they were 98% sure they wanted it before, being that close to the edge and not jumping in makes them look back and say, “Well, I must’ve had a good reason for not doing it when I was right about to.”
As the man, it’s your responsibility to lead the women who like you to intimacy. Many women have mental walls they need you to help them overcome to get there, and doing that may include being persistent and allowing them to save face so that they can later say, “Well, I told him I was tired, but he still insisted on me coming home with him anyway and it just happened! I tried to get out of it!”
When I was first training myself up as a persistent guy, it helped me to imagine myself as a Latin or Italian man romancing some ravishing belle. In America, men are trained not to be pushy, so we’re much more hands off and if a woman says, “No, I have to get up early tomorrow,” we just accept it and back down, even if that’s not what she wanted us to do. Can you picture a Latin man or an Italian man letting it stand at just one refusal?
Italian: Come with me, bella donna!
Girl: Alas, I cannot, I must rise early tomorrow.
Italian: Oh, okay.
Silliness! Here’s how a romantic man runs this interaction:
Lover: Come with me, let’s have a nightcap before we call it a night.
Girl: Ah, I can’t, I have to get up early tomorrow.
Lover: You can come with me. We’ll spend but thirty minutes, then you can go.
Girl: But I’m tired!
Lover: The night must not end too soon! Thirty minutes; let’s go.
Be prepared to persist up to ten or fifteen times if necessary, unless she is absolutely firm in her refusal to join you. If she’s waxing back and forth and clearly on the fence, that means she’s still open to the idea.
Don’t settle for a fuzzy “no” when you can get an “okay” instead.
Remember too that people will rationalize and justify whatever decision they make. Buy something you didn’t intend to buy? “Well, I was there and it just looked good.” Really wanted to take a trip, but you didn’t end up going? “Eh, I didn’t really want to go there that bad.” Women do the same thing with men, so you really must move quickly to avoid this happening to you.
“I didn’t really like him all that much anyway,” is the last thing you want a girl thinking about you. Get together with her quickly to avoid this. Just another reason why you can’t afford to be putting things off.
Coming Back from Auto-Rejection and Missed Escalation Windows
Our reader did almost everything right with his girl. He got her excited about him; he moved things forward very quickly and got her out of there with great speed, and he invited her home. I might recommend not kissing her until she’s home with him, just because it generally makes girls get a bit more resistant to coming home with you because it makes them think, “Wait, we’ve kissed; what are we going to do when we get home? Oh no, I don’t want to look like a slut!” whereas girls you haven’t kissed are still just thinking, “Ooh, I really like this guy… I wonder what will happen or if he will do anything if I go home with him?” So you have a bit more management to do with girls you’ve kissed than you do with girls you haven’t kissed. But the kissing didn’t really hurt him all that much; she still left the party alone with him. The only reason he did not sleep together with his girl that night was because of the missed window to persist with her and close out on that last 5% of the seduction at the end. Otherwise, his speed and decisiveness is excellent.
None of that matters though when she looks back on the interaction and gets resentful for not getting what she was after that night. All she sees is a night she went out likely wanting to find an attractive man to sleep with, a man she met and was attracted to and left a party with and thought she was going to get together with, and then nothing happening at the end of the night… and she feels bitter about that.
How do you recover from such a situation? Not by chasing. Chasing only makes it worse. When she’s feeling bitter and resentful and telling herself that she doesn’t like you and didn’t really want you anyway, running after her and working to try and get her won’t turn things around; it’ll only make them worse.
Unfortunately, there’s actually no solid answer on how to recover from a mistake like this, and also unfortunately it’s one of the questions I hear the most: “How do I fix it with this girl who went cold on me?” It sucks, I know, I’ve been there more times than I can count. But just like it’s easier to avoid a car accident than it is to fix a mangled wreck, and it’s easier to keep a job you already have than it is to get back one you’ve lost, so it is with girls who like you: it’s far, far, FAR easier to get a girl if you get her while she still likes you, than it is to try and turn things around and find a way to get her after the window has closed.
I have turned it around with a handful of girls I’ve lost, and come close with a few others. But when a window closes, it is almost always absolute. You can bring it back if it’s just closed and you realize it; for instance, if you say something and she feels like you’re rejecting her and she gets snippy and says, “Fine, you know what, I’m over you,” and goes to leave and you stop her and you’re very warm with her without being needy or apologetic and you get her back feeling good again. But if time passes and she spends hours or days or weeks stewing over how much she hates your guts… 999 times out of 1000 you won’t turn it around.
I’ve made concerted efforts to turn things around with a few elite caliber girls I’d lost in the past, and one of the girls I successfully turned things around with became my girlfriend for a few years. At the time, I truly believed she was worth putting in the effort to try and turn things around with, and I was right. I recommend if you’re going to put the time and effort and mental footwork into trying to turn things around, you only do so with a girl who seems very, very worth it, because this has effects on you, too: the more time you spend working on a girl and investing time and effort in her, the more highly you will value her. You don’t want to risk making yourself start obsessing over some sub-par gal; I’ve seen that happen and it’s ugly (the guy usually ends up saying, “I don’t know what it is, she isn’t that great, I know, but I have all these feelings for her and I just can’t stop thinking about her!”). If you’re going to risk falling for a girl, make sure you think she’s worth it.
That said, if you go the route of attempting a turnaround, these are the elements I believe you must have to turn things around with a girl in auto-rejection you’ve missed windows with:
- Total confidence and self-assurance. You must know without question that you are the best possible thing that could happen to her life, because she no longer believes this and will fight this belief and unless yours is stronger than hers, you will not change her mind.
- Ability to express warmth and sadness without neediness or supplication. Kiss up to a girl, chase her, or act needy toward her or supplicate to her or apologize to her and you lose her for good or get slotted into nice-guy friend-zone land. You must show her that you care about her, and are sad that she is hurt / upset / leaving you / not spending time with you, but you must do it in an incredibly strong, completely non-needy way.
- Time and exposure. You need to be physically around this girl. In most cases, you absolutely have to be around her so she can get some time being with you in your presence and reset her feelings toward you that built up in her when you were not around; e.g., she sees you in person and starts thinking, “Actually, he’s quite warm and not as horrible a person as I’ve been tagging him as.”
Additionally, there’s one, less simple, alternative to this, which is:
- Eloquence and knowing her very well. If you both know her very well and you have a very good, very eloquent way with words, you may be able to turn things around over the phone, via text message, or in person. Some of the turnarounds I’ve had have come via text or email when I was able to show, in a very non-needy but still very warm way, that I cared about the girl and knew a great deal of things about her that no one else knew and that I understood why she had to go but that I was sad and would miss her.
If this seems extreme and hard… it is. Auto-rejection is one of the toughest situations to try and fix out there. The odds are stacked highly against you; it isn’t impossible, but it’s going to be like climbing Everest. The few times you see guys turn things around with girls they lost, it’s always a great story, and it seems like a triumphant moment, and the reason that is is because it’s so rare and almost never happens.
Light at the End of the Tunnel
Fortunately, this isn’t all sadness and loss and pain and hopelessness. Chances are, there are probably several hundred thousand to several million available women living in whatever city you’re in; even if you’re in a medium-sized town, there are going to be at least 10,000 to 20,000 women your age available. So so long as you keep meeting new women, you keep getting chances to do things right.
It took me years of messing things up before I started getting my act together and consistently springing at escalation windows whenever I saw them. For me, I used to spend a lot of time deliberating, telling myself, “It’s too soon to do something, if I do it might be too fast for her and maybe she’ll leave!” so I wouldn’t do anything, thinking I’d wait until later or the next date or next week sometime, and then I’d lose the girl and never see her again. Eventually this happened to me enough that I my thought process flipped to, “If I don’t move fast enough with this girl, I’m going to lose her and never see her again! I’ve got to try and get together with her now!” Hopefully you’re not as hardheaded as I am and it takes you less time / fewer hard lessons to learn this one than it did me.
That’s the way it goes though. You get fired from a few jobs, and you feel sad that you lost those jobs and can’t get them back, but you learn to do better at your next job. You wreck a few cars by driving carelessly, and you mourn the loss of those vehicles, and do a better job handling your next car. You lose a few girls by moving too slow and not persisting enough and missing escalation windows, and you feel bad about these girls going cold on you, but you resolve to do better next time and move faster and persist like a romantic man would and give these girls what they want from you: a night of passion and romance and satisfaction.
That’s the light at the end of the tunnel: you learn, get better, and improve. Oh, and our reader? I wrote him back recommending that he mostly focus on simply continuing to meet more girls, and he tells me that last Friday he threw a party at his house and did just that, sleeping with a cute new girl he met that night.
Here’s to your success, present and future, brother ;)