DEAR JOHN: Why is it that when you are vague and play hard to get and don't open up, then men are more interested? However, the minute you are nice and tell a man how much you appreciate the things he does for you, they seem to lose interest. Is it true that I should play the games my friends tell me to play, things like telling men that I am not available or not answering the phone or not returning their phone calls? I can see doing this in the beginning of a relationship, but after you have been dating six months it seems a little strange.
— Games Resistant, Rochester, N.Y.
DEAR GAMES RESISTANT: Martians instinctively pursue that which they have to hunt. You're trying to be helpful, friendly and easy are wonderful attributes, but in the early stages of a relationship, it can send the wrong signals.
Here is a small example: When a guy wants to open your car door, step aside and let him do it. I know you can open your own car door, but a man who wants to please and impress you is motivated to try harder to win your heart, so give him the opportunity.
Remember that men always appreciate what they need to work hard to accomplish. So make him work a little, and you'll both be pleased with the result!
DEAR JOHN: Recently, my husband had a vasectomy. We both agreed that he would do it, but two nights before the procedure, I changed my mind. However, he went ahead and did it, and it has left us in a bad situation. I am feeling hurt, regretful and depressed.
I know I don't want any more children; however I don't feel ready to make that decision permanent, right now. My husband is 39, and I am 30 and 19 weeks pregnant with our third child. Will my regrets eventually pass or should we seriously consider having the vasectomy reversed?
— Uncertain, Riverside, Calif.
DEAR UNCERTAIN: As you probably know from the past, pregnancy is a time when all of your emotions are raw. I'm not sure if I understand why this procedure could not have been delayed until after your delivery. But that aside, now is the time for you to focus on a healthy and successful pregnancy and give the other two children in your life the love and support they need. Like so many other issues in our lives, the passage of time may well make your course clear. Sometime after the arrival of your third baby, revisit the issue of a reversal and see how you both feel then.
DEAR JOHN: My husband gets angry and threatens to leave if I show any emotion or ask for affection. We have been married almost nine years, and my husband still thinks that I should be perfectly happy, every minute of every day. I feel so much bottled up inside of me that I feel like I am going to burst. I know he will get angry with me if I cry or try to talk to him about how I feel, and then things will just be worse. He also has refused counseling. I don't know what to do.
-- In Tears, Jefferson City, Mo.
DEAR IN TEARS: Men often shy away when women bubble over with emotions. They are at a loss to reason for themselves what the source of the problem is and/or they simply don't want to know.