relationships

Playing the Game

Synopsis: “The Carrie Diaries” is a new series that airs on the CW. It is considered to be a pre-quel to “Sex and the City.” This show takes place in 1984 when Carrie was just an innocent sixteen-year-old girl struggling to overcome her mother’s recent death. She goes back and forth from an internship in New York City to her home in suburban Connecticut striving to find out who she is and her purpose in life.

This conversation scene between Carrie and her friend Maggie immediately got my attention:

Maggie: “Yes Walt and I are back together and you know why, because I’m gone. That’s the only way to make a guy interested is to make yourself unavailable. That’s what you should do with Sebastian.”

Carrie: “But I don’t want to play games with Sebastian.”

Maggie: “Then I hope you’re willing to lose.”

ImageWhat are these games we play? Is this what the strategy toward attraction and gaining attention has come down to? Sometimes it is important to distance yourself from a situation you find drawing you in. Mostly, this may act as a protection seal on your vulnerability. On the other hand, this distance may create a boundary- a type of block keeping you from what your goal may really be. Carrie, unsure if believing her friend was the right thing to do, hesitated in playing this game. Is this really the right or effective way to get the guy’s attention of whom she wanted to be with? There may be a time for this “game” and a time where it all needs to end. In the beginning this “chase” may seem to be the way to capture and manifest this new spark, but later on you must drop these games in order to feel and gain security. Honesty is a big part of a successful relationship and if games are involved it may lead to certain drawbacks in communication. As humans, we behave and react the best when we know we are being given a reward after a struggle. When we are faced with something we know we can’t have, shouldn’t have or struggled to obtain we find the end prize that much more appealing. This social psychological approach has been examined through studies on positive reinforcement and other theories in sociology concerning the pursuit of rewards. This may deem to be true, but to what extent do we engage in this game until we actually reach the level of satisfaction we desire? The problem may arise, however, when both parties are attempting this game simultaneously. If a girl distances herself to come off as a higher commodity, and the boy is doing the exact same thing, this approach may serve just the opposite purpose. Therefore, the expression, “two can play at this game,” does not seem to fit in this situation. While playing this game of unavailability may work temporarily, eventually it is crucial to express true feelings for another and aim for honesty. In the end, if we actually want a relationship to work, we need to have trust in another person. More importantly, we need to remember to trust ourselves first. It can be scary to trust ourselves living in a world where each day may bring a scary unknown event to life, but if we do not take that risk we will never know what could have been. In order to achieve true happiness we must be ready to take that chance on ourselves. After all, being able to love, trust, and really know yourself takes priority over a relationship for two.