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Some women will deceive, manipulate and even abuse men to satisfy their private desires by making them feel good about themselves in relationships. They’re not so much “bad women” as female hunters and female PUA.

According to the 2011 National Intimate Relationships and Sexual Violence Survey, 48.8 percent of men have experienced psychological attacks by their partners. A survey of targeted minorities showed that 70.2 percent of women had been psychologically harmed by their same-sex partners (Matte Lafontaine, 2011).

Compared with the male version of PUA, women’s means are often more hidden and difficult to detect. KY comes first to talk to you about how to identify female hunters.


“Signs you re being played by a woman” 

1. What are the common tools used by female hunters?

After combining research by April Kirkwood, a counsellor focused on mental abuse, and Dr. Karen Keller, who studies influence and manipulation, we found that the main manipulations that women often use are:

1. A sense of security created by isolation

In a normal intimate relationship, some of your partner’s actions will also make you feel at ease, such as spending time with you when you need it and facing your plight together;

But the hunter gives you “peace of mind” and is not based on accompanying you to face your problems. Instead, they encourage you to run away and seize the opportunity to imply that “as long as you’re with her, those troubles don’t exist.” Slowly, you will rely on this “dream space” with her, gradually alienating the original circle of life, into their hands.

“Signs you re being played by a woman”

2. Create a sense of importance for seduction

Female manipulators often share their “dark secrets” with you early in the relationship, such as the dark side of your personality, unactionable mistakes, and so on, and suggest that you are the only one who can listen to them and that you are special and important to her (Holland, 2018).

But they often turn the conversation to you while sharing, taking advantage of your vulnerabilities to gain the grip and control of your grip.

In normal intimacy, we tend to be cautious about the dark side of our hearts for fear of damaging each other’s impressions of ourselves. What’s more, even if we know the other person’s inner vulnerability, we want to protect it, not exploit it.

Like what:

3. A sense of value created for profit

A good relationship should also make you feel valuable. Your partner will treat you with respect and love as a complete person, hear your thoughts, emotions, trust your abilities and qualities, convince you that you deserve to be treated well, and be more positive about your relationships with others.

But the manipulator will tie your sense of value to her needs. They will pretend to be helpless and ask you to help, to give you a sense of superiority, or to reward you when you meet their demands, but to be indifferent when you can’t. Slowly, you will continue to please them to maintain this sense of value, even if you feel guilty about not being able to satisfy them.

Also, there are other signals that you may be manipulating:

Men are also victims of manipulative relationships, and men are more affected than women

Studies have found that both men and women who experience manipulative relationships can lead to low self-esteem, depression, anxiety, and other emotions (Hines Morrison, 2011). And society’s neglect of men puts them under more pressure.

Because most people think that men are naturally dominant in relationships. When men say they are manipulated by their partners, they are questioned and even ridiculed for their “incompetence”.

This leaves some men with a sense of shame in addition to depression and low self-esteem (Hines Morrison, 2011). Studies have found that male victims feel more mentally harmed than female victims in the same age group (Karakurt and Silver, 2013).

“Signs you re being played by a woman”

2. Being a hunter may be a passive choice

Personality traits, such as narcissism and psychopathy, can make people natural hunters.

They are usually more self-centred, and the people around them are “tool people” to meet their needs. This allows them to interact with people at the beginning, not because of emotions, but to use others to satisfy their own private desires. 

Moreover, these people also lack empathy, will not stand in your point of view to experience your hard work, even if you see a lot of pressure, do not think it is caused by them, but feel that you are vulnerable. They can thus manipulate others for longer without having to go through the condemnation of conscience (Waddell et al., 2020).

Some people become hunters because of bad experiences in the past.

The pain and frustration of the past make them feel that the intimacy is unstable, and they must control everything in the relationship in order not to be hurt again. So they choose to face the relationship in a manipulative, conquering way.

Keep the other person firmly in their own hands, so that they feel that they also control the risks in the relationship in their own hands. Even if you feel that you are doing something wrong, you will choose to continue to do so for fear of losing control of your risk.

But new research has found that people who become hunters are influenced by stereotyped gender expectations.

“Signs you re being played by a woman”

Our society has established expectations for the gender temperament of men and women. Men are considered to be in control, empowered, autonomous and bold, which leads some men to see bullying and controlling relationships as part of masculinity, and not to do so “unlike men”.

Studies have found that for men, the more traditional masculinity the personality is, the more likely they are to be manipulative (Waddell et al., 2020).

It’s worth noting that masculinity also encourages women to become manipulators (Waddell et al., 2020).

This is not because some women are born with masculinity, but because women in the process of growing up, long placed in the position dominated by men, are asked to obey and obey, their real feelings, demands are not respected, which makes them feel depressed and aggrieved.

When they find that powerful, aggressive men always convey their ideas and others respect them, they begin to develop them in themselves, even learning to dominate and control others.

In this way, others will not be able to suppress their voices, interfere with their ideas, their demands will be accepted and implemented, their emotions and feelings may also be seen and understood.

3. How to deal with hunting relationships?

Scenario 1: When you meet a hunter

First, don’t try to change or empathize with them. Manipulation of others may be part of the hunter’s personality, or it may have become their habit.

They are very sensitive to your partner’s reactions, and when they realize that you are trying to change them, they will do you more harm because they want to take back control and have stronger, more comprehensive control over you.

So you need to start by thinking about reducing the risks you face and leaving the relationship if possible.

If you can’t leave for the time being,

Please click here for our suggestions.

Better protect yourself.

Scenario 2: When someone around you may be in a hunting relationship

You can listen carefully when the other person tells you, help him find reliable resources, or you can express concern when you find that the other person is not right.

However, we do not recommend that you “dismantle” the truth directly. Because manipulated people often don’t realize they’re being manipulated, or don’t want to face it even if they realize it. Direct demolition may make him suddenly face unbearable pain, eager to deny or even help his partner find a reason, but not conducive to their recognition of the truth of the relationship.

Scenario 3: If you find yourself probably the hunter

Don’t worry

We’ve got it for you, too

Ways to improve:

The essence of the question is to ask female hunters about the means they use in intimate relationships. In terms of attention, the female version of PUA seems to be far less than the male version of PUA. However, in the face of the manipulation of intimate relationships, both men and women can be victims. It’s more worthwhile to stand together against manipulation and PUA than to blame each other and to really win a sincere relationship for us.


Friedersdorf, C. (2016). The Understudied Female Sexual Predator. The Atlantic.

Hines, D. A., & Malley-Morrison, K. (2001). Psychological effects of partner abuse against men: A neglected research area. Psychology of Men & Masculinity, 2(2), 75.

Holland, K. (2018). How to Recognize the Signs of Emotional Manipulation and What to Do.

Karakurt, G., & Silver, K. E. (2013). Emotional abuse in intimate relationships: The role of gender and age. Violence and victims, 28(5), 804-821.

Keller, K. (n.d.). Learn to Spot the Female Manipulator.

Kirkwood, A. (2019). The Four Methods Women Use To Manipulate Men.

Linda, B. & Charlie, B. (2019). Manipulation: The Costs Outweigh the Benefits. Psychology Today.

Matte, M., & Lafonine, M. (2011). Validation of a measure of psychological aggression in same-sex couples: Descriptive da他 on perpetration and victimization and their association with physical violence. Journal of GLBT Family Studies, 7, 226-244.

Moss, G. (2019). 5 Signs That You May Have A Controlling Partner.

Sortsleeve, C. (2018). How to Tell If Someone Is Manipulating You—And What to Do About It. Time.

Waddell, C., Van Doorn, G., March, E., & Grieve, R. (2020). Dominance or deceit: The role of the Dark Triad and hegemonic masculinity in emotional manipulation. Personality and Individual Differences, 166.

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