How can you tell when someone's flirting with you...

I occasionally garner minor accolades for wit and intelligence, however, there are some areas of my education that are severely lacking. In the area of male/female interactions, I suspect that I miss cues that I don’t look for from the guys, and therefore forget to look for when it’s not a guy I’m talking to. I suspect that in this area at least, that I am as dense as a block of ironwood. The only reason I have made any progress at all is that reality is persistent.

So, males, females, straights and otherwise, the question I put before you is in two parts:
[li]What tips you off that you’re being checked out/flirted with and…[/li][li]How do you initiate flirtation without coming across as a stalker/spazz/strange person who should be avoided?[/li][/ol]
You don’t have to answer both queries, but feel free to elaborate.


  1. I usually cotton on about when she starts unzipping my pants.
  2. I shut the hell up and cross my fingers.

Oh, and thanks for showing me how to use the list coding :slight_smile:

[li]If it ever gets to that stage, I usually catch on myself. I’m dense but not impermeable.[/li][li]Never cross your fingers where she can see them – she could misinterpret finger-crossing to your disadvantage.[/li][/ol]

You’re welcome – as I said, I am slightly expert in some areas, or at least less inexpert than others. :smiley:


Disclaimer: I am engaged (if you just found this out now you’re probably the last on the board:)) and on occasion I fail to realize that my beloved wants to have sex. So perhaps taking advice on flirting from me is not in your best interests. I have, however, gleaned the following from others:

  1. If someone’s making eye contact with you, then either you have a horrible disfigurement, you have something in your teeth/otherwise amusing to look at, that person is checking you out, or some combination of the above.

  2. Light touching (and, in some cases, hitting, though be sure on this one before you kiss a girl/guy who really is pissed off at you) can be a good sign, as well as the person in question brushing away stray hairs or doing other things to improve his/her image in your presence. This can also mean that same person is just plain nervous, however.

  3. If s/he suggests going back to his/her place, it might not be to check out your Thurman Munson collection. Then again, you never know when you’re going to find a diehard Thurman Munson fan.

  4. When in doubt, smile.

former socially clueless nerd 'checkin in…

Check out this book: THe Naked Ape, by Desmond morris.
Naked Ape on

Provides a detailed itemized list of signals from both sides.
You may want to get the illustrated version. Also, your local public library will almost certainly have a copy, if you want to check it out for free. The TV miniseries is the best though, if you can find it. This guys does a detailed analysis of “courship” rituals of the human animal.

Would have been invaluable if I had stumbled accross it when single.
Now I just have Mrs. Trupa explain things to me… :smiley:

How can I tell if someone is flirting with me? Easy, my wife tells me on the way home.

How to tell if someone is flirting? Just smile and talk less. It will become obvious in time. Also, observe the eye/hand coordinatoin.

And on how to initiate such a conversation. plain and simple- Flatter

  1. Dilated pupils
  2. Body position/direction towards/facing you
  3. (more) physical contact
  4. When they rub up against your leg (not to be confused with any canines doing that you sick puppy… heh, dog, puppy)

It’s all about body language.

If she doesn’t seem to know what to do with her hands …

If she can’t stop touching her hair or her mouth …

If she laughs too much at things you say …

If she puts her hands behind her back, or arches her back (or otherwise displays (not like that! fully clothed, I mean) her front to you) …

At least, that’s what I do - unconsciously - when I’m talking to someone I fancy.

If I want to flirt with them, I try to exaggerate those responses - I like to think in ways that make me look less, rather than more, stupid

I am living proof that you need to know very little about flirting to actually pull, its amazing how much you cna bluff. My advice is to chill and try and wing it. Not a high success rate I’ll admit but it works for me.

I have always heard this, and find it very misleading. I spend a lot of time in bars people watching and realized that girls do those things any time they’re nervous from any reason. It can be nervous because she wants you, or it could be nervous be cause the loser who keeps looking at her is creeping her out. It could be she’s nervous because her dog is at the vet.

ALso women get really touchy to show that they are interested. But they do the exact same thing to say that you have proven your trustworthyness as a friend to get close with.

All of the signs commonly happen from other reasons. There are no real definitive signs(well other than taking off all her clothes and sticking her tounge down your throat). It’s just like reading poker players. You have to develop a feel for it, because once you focus on certain actions and look for the guide book, you will be missing a lot.

But it always worked for Bugs Bunny… :smiley:

Another way to find if the person is flirting with you:
Ask him/her ‘Are yo uflirting with me?’ it always get the truth out.

Mr. Beckwall puffs out his chest, strokes his throat and makes a trilling sound. Wait a minute, actually that would be the bird in front of the house who is building a little condo for his lived one on our light fixture.

I second whoever said eye contact. Sustained eye contact, especially. And I would like to add (in the case of some men and perhaps women) boasting. Some people just feel the need to toss out their final bowling score or SAT results.

Good luck, and remember - flirting is a mutually enjoyable thing!

This thread is better suited for In My Humble Opinion. I’ll move it for you.

Cajun Man
for the SDMB

Ain’t it a bitch when you realize 6 months later:
"My gosh, I bet she was flirting with me."

:wink: [sup]Cowgirl, you flirt real good![/sup]


Why look for girls/guys to flirt with you, when you can flirt with people you are interested in.

Here is a guide!

It is pretty slick, I havent used it, but it does have things I do do.

Worse comes to worse all the person can say is ‘go away’. Which puts you at square one.

Apparently if a woman makes some vague attempt to cover up the size of her bottom when she walks away from you, it means she likes you that way. This assumes of course that the woman is under the impression, rightly or wrongly, that there’s something wrong with the size of her bottom.

Anyway it’s the only flirting rule I’ve ever seen work, and even then I couldn’t say 100%. Because obviously I didn’t go “hey, it’s not that big”.

Interesting point. The reactions are pretty similar - being with someone you’re attracted to does make me nervous and uncomfortable, but in a positive way. I guess if I was nervous in a negative way I wouldn’t stick around to chat with a stranger, I’d go get my dog from the vet or whatever.

You’re right that there are no ‘rules.’ But if she’s smiling and ‘warm’ (I know, how can you tell when she’s ‘warm’) then that can only be a good thing.

I’m often informed several days later by 3rd-party observers – who never seem to find an opportunity to clue me in as-it-happens. :mad:

But I’m not 100% impervious, there are times I do notice. However I’ve by now conditioned myself to a default setting of “oh, she’s just being friendly” so the way I notice if she was actually signaling “another kind” of “interest”, is when I’m informed several days later by 3rd-party observers who did not seem to find an opportunity to clue me in as-it-happened :smiley: