What is future faking?

Here's how you know if you're a victim.

10 July, 2024
What is future faking?

Have you ever felt like someone was stringing you along with promises that never really seem to come true? You know, like that one friend who keeps saying they’ll hang out or call but never follows through? Or maybe it's your crush who keeps texting sweet nothings but never really asks you out. If you can relate to this, then there's a chance you might have been “future faked”. And here's what you can do about it. 

But first, what is future faking? 

It’s when someone makes a promise (usually something great) for the future in order to get what they want from you. This is a narcissist's favourite move to keep you motivated in the present. They use their empty-words to keep you hooked while they get what they want, whether it's your attention, your effort, or in some cases, even your money.

They keep dangling promises, talking big game about what's gonna happen—the amazing trip, the glowing promotion, the rock-solid relationship, you get the gist. But they never really intend to follow through. 


Why do people future fake?

There’s a bunch of reasons, but it usually boils down to wanting something easy in that very moment. They might not want to deal with a fight or maybe they just want to keep you hooked without putting in much (read as: any) effort.

How to recognise future faking? 

All talk-no show

They shower you with promises, but when it comes to actually following through, they are nowhere to be seen. *Major red flag*. 

Inconsistent actions

Their words don’t really match their actions. They say sorry after messing up, but don’t actually change their behaviour. “I know I was late again, but next time for sure..” Yeah, right. 

Repeated patterns

They’ve made similar promises before, and guess what? It never happened. They keep letting you down each time. It's high time you wake up and recognise these patterns. 

The blame-game

When things fall through, it’s always someone else’s fault. “The bus was late,” “My phone died,” well well. 


How to protect yourself from a future faker? 

The best way to avoid getting played is by paying attention to what people actually do, and not just what they say. If someone keeps breaking promises, it’s time to stop giving them the benefit of the doubt.

Here’s what you can do instead. 

Watch their actions: Don’t just listen to their words, see if their actions match. 

Call them out: Let the person know their empty promises are hurting you.

Set limits: Don’t give too much based on promises alone. Make sure you see some real commitment or progress on their part. 

Trust your instincts: If something feels off, it probably is. Don’t ignore your gut feelings. Move on!

Walk away: If someone keeps future faking, it might be time to ditch them. You deserve better.


The bottom line is that your time and efforts are valuable. Don’t waste them on someone who keeps promising a future that never really arrives. If someone isn’t treating you right now, they probably won’t treat you any better later. A Guaranteed fact.  

All in all, work on holding someone who shows you they care through their actions, not just with their words. Stay smart, trust yourself, and surround yourself with people who actually-truly care about you.

Lead image credit: Pexels 

Also read: How to deal with your first heartbreak?

Also read: Do you have a frenemy in disguise? Here's how to spot them