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How to Tell if Your Friend is a Seducer
4 ways to tell if your new friend is a "seducer" (not what you think) or genuine.


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There are several signs you can look for to tell if your friend just wants power over you.


Seducers take advantage of our vulnerability, and very deliberately use it to get what they need—power and control over another human being.”
You're at an awards dinner feeling somewhat lost and lonely without your spouse. He’s grinding out some last-minute work and couldn’t come, "Sorry, babe…" he said before you walked out the door.

A stranger walks up to you and starts talking with you, out of nowhere, admiring your dress, your hair, responding as if the slightest thing you say is terribly witty. She's so charming, you keep looking behind you, thinking she must have you mistaken with somebody else. She's behaving as if you've been friends for years, creating a sort of "us" out of the two of you, standing there chatting in the middle of the room. Then she says, "This is boring. Let’s go clubbing!" and even though there’s a warning going off somewhere in the back of your brain, as in, "Is this really a good idea? I don’t even know this person!" off you go.

The next few weeks are delicious, as the two of you spend more and more time together. You feel vibrant and whole, like everything is right with the world, not the usual mother-of-two and overwrought doer-of-chores you generally see yourself as. You tune out your husband’s complaints that you’re never home any more, that he’s tired of finding a cold house with the kids parked at the neighbors night after night.

Or you snap back at him, "Can’t you be happy for me?! For once I have a friend who wants to have a little fun. Can’t you just let me enjoy it—with all I do for this family…"

Until a few weeks later when your supposed BFF either fails to show up (permanently), or announces, "It's been real, but I gotta move on to better things” (ouch!) and of course, doesn’t answer your calls, texts or any other type of communications.

You feel like such a fool! Now, of course, you see your erstwhile BFF in the cold light of having been dumped. You see that you were simply used to amuse her momentarily, used to pay for her drinks and clubbing (yes, you did). There was no real friendship. There was only using. The thought is hardly comforting.

So what happened? Just because you feel like a fool doesn't mean you are one. You simply got caught up in the fantasy so cleverly woven by your "friend," and confused it with reality. You see, what you thought was a friend, was actually a seducer in disguise.

Seducers are often thought of as using seduction to satisfy sexual urges, but actually seducers are power-mongers. And many seducers don’t want sex from you. They want power over you. That’s their "hit." Seducers prey on our desire to be appreciated and valued. So much of what goes on in our lives doesn't make us feel special. You do your job, you take care of what has to be taken care of, and you go about the daily business of living. And where in this does someone ever say, "Wow! You're a terrific human being. I think everything you are and do is fantastic?"

Your husband probably did when you were courting, but that’s a long time ago (even if it was just last year). Now, for the most part, you’re to assume he loves you. Yet we still crave that incredible attention and admiration and are willing to put up with the most horrendous relationships to get it. Seducers take advantage of our vulnerability, and very deliberately use it to get what they need—power and control over another human being.

Here are four tips on how to avoid falling into the trap of a seducer?

1. Don't buy into the assumption of "instant intimacy." You are not a "we" or "us" or "BFF" with someone you've just met. Beware of individuals who create a false sense of "together" too rapidly.

2. Listen to your own "Danger!" warnings. Most of us recall, in hindsight, hearing that warning but ignoring it. Don't ignore it!

3. Beware of anyone who interferes with your normal routines and obligations, especially if being with them requires that you be away from your spouse or your family. Beware of someone who always wants to see you on your own and have you all to themselves. Beware of a person who is disinterested in meeting or spending time with your husband or your family.

4. Take the time (months, not weeks) to get to know someone before you accord them the precious gift of your friendship. If they are worthy of your friendship, they will still be there in the long run.

Noelle C. Nelson, Ph.D., is a relationship expert, popular speaker in the U.S. and abroad, and author of nine best-selling books, including her most recent, "Your Man is Wonderful" and "Dangerous Relationships." Dr. Nelson focuses on how we can all enjoy happy, fulfilling lives while accomplishing great things in love, at home and at work, as we appreciate ourselves, our world and all others. For more, visit www.noellenelson.com and www.yourmaniswonderful.com/blog.


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