15 Clear Signs Another Woman Is Intimidated By You

Relationship Advice | | , Culture & Relationships Writer
Updated On: February 12, 2024
signs another woman is intimidated by you
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The signs another woman is intimidated by you can reveal a lot, particularly about that woman, how you project yourself, and the equation you two share. When a girl is intimidated by another girl, it is often dismissed simplistically, either as jealousy or bullying behavior. But it’s often more complex than that.

To understand it, let’s consider the word ‘intimidation’. Though ‘threat’ and ‘intimidation’ mean similar things, the difference lies in their perception. A threat is an active force, while intimidation is passive. Intimidation is often what we feel about others rather than what they make us feel. In fact, what makes someone intimidating is not that they’re superior to us, but our belief that we’re somehow inferior to them. 

So, why a person feels intimidated depends more on internal factors than external factors. With that definition in mind, let’s take a closer look at the signs that you come across as intimidating to another woman, and what you can do about it. 

15 Clear Signs Another Woman Is Intimidated By You

If you’re in a position where you’re constantly wondering why other women are jealous of you or are trying to bring you down, you may consider the possibility that they’re intimidated by you. Do not let anyone blame you for this, as this is not something you can control. The signs another woman is intimidated by you could be a manifestation of her own insecurities and not your conduct. So be on the lookout for signs of an insecure woman. But at the same time, you should try to make yourself appear less of a threat. A good starting point could be looking for the following signs of intimidation: 

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1. She barely talks to you

She avoids any conversations with you or ignores you altogether. She also discourages further conversation by answering in monosyllables. There could be two reasons for this. This woman feels threatened by you and doesn’t want to give you an advantage over her. Or that another woman is attracted to you and is conscious of how you may perceive her. 

What you can do: It can help if you try to initiate a conversation. It will be difficult to get her to communicate but this will make you appear less daunting to her.

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2. She’s nervous around you

If she is intimidated, there will be visible signs that a woman is uncomfortable around you. She’ll fidget a lot, possibly knock over a thing or two, look visibly confused about simple things, and may laugh without any explanation. Some people also stammer, sweat profusely, and get thirsty frequently when they’re nervous. 

What you can do: Try smiling to lighten any tension between you two. You could also crack a joke or two to make her feel more comfortable. 

3. She gossips about you

You may discover through other people that this woman has been trying to get information about you from them or through cyberstalking. It’s important to note if she makes the effort to verify the credibility of the people she’s contacted to unearth details about you. Because if she does, then she is only trying to get to know you but is too scared to talk to you. But if she asks just anybody, then she is looking for evidence to fit whatever narrative she has formed about you. 

What you can do: You can confront her directly and tell her to respect your privacy.

4. She’s putting more effort into her looks

Notice if she has changed the way she usually dresses. When another woman is attracted to you, she may do that, especially if she’s dating as an introvert. If she is intimidated by your looks because she’s in awe of you, she may feel inferior about herself. So, you may notice a drastic change in her appearance. It’s her way of feeling better about herself. 

What you can do: You can pay her a compliment in such cases. This makes her feel secure and makes you look less intimidating. 

5. She avoids your proximity

A prominent sign another woman is intimidated by you is that she avoids being near you. Think of the introduction scene for Miranda Priestly from The Devil Wears Prada. People not only ran away from her, but a woman actually left the elevator she was in. If you hold a position of power over her, then it’s possible she doesn’t make a bad impression. 

What you can do: Throw a casual party for your colleagues to make yourself appear more approachable.

Do you find women with power intimidating?

6. She appears to not speak her mind

Kate, an editor from LA, told us about Camila, a Mexican intern who was terrified of her. When working on social media strategy for a book on the Mexican diaspora, Kate sought Camila’s opinion. But Camila never said a word, just nodded to everything. Later, she disclosed to another colleague that she didn’t think the strategy was good. “The lesson I learned was that if a girl is intimidated by you, she’ll not speak her mind,” says Kate. 

What you can do: It’s best to have a one-on-one in a casual setting, so she can feel more comfortable around you.

7. She over-explains herself

Psychologists suggest that the behavior of over-explaining or fawning is a trauma response to avoid conflict. It’s also possible that this girl likes you but is hiding it, so she may want to convey that she’s not a threat to you. So, if she gives you long-winded explanations for things where a sentence would have sufficed, it could be a sign that this girl is scared of you. 

What you can do: Try to calm her down when she starts fawning, and tell her she’s in a secure space so she can stop feeling threatened. It’s also possible that she’s one of those people who likes to talk too much, so keep an eye out for other signs of intimidation too.

8. Signs a woman is threatened by you – Defensive body language

Speaking of other signs of intimidation, there’s nothing as revelatory as female body language. Women often boast about their gut feeling or say they’re getting a certain vibe about a person. But essentially, they’re just subconsciously analyzing body-language cues. To confirm whether or not another woman is intimidated by you, keep an eye out for the following:

  • How often she initiates the eye-contact, or if she avoids it altogether
  • Does her shoulders seem hunched
  • Does she cross her arms
  • Are her hands balled in fists
  • Does she try to avoid standing too close to you
  • Does her body stay at an angle to you

What you can do: Try to keep your body relaxed and open. Smile and maintain eye contact to cut the tension and put her at ease. 

9. She belittles you

A person may choose between a flight or fight response when posed with a threat. So, it’s possible that instead of avoiding you (flight response), this girl may get defensive (fight response). She’ll contradict everything you say and be dismissive of your suggestions. For example, if you suggest a steak dinner, she’ll start advocating for a vegan lifestyle. 

What you can do: Try to ask her opinion and praise her choices. This will make her feel less threatened and her attempts to belittle you may stop.

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10. She tries to discredit you

She may cut you off while you’re speaking or try to laugh off your suggestions. My former boss, Gemma, told me about a girl who had the frustrating habit of repeating whatever Gemma said, making her suggestions and inputs sound like her own. “She wouldn’t even rephrase. I mean, I understand it’s possible that someone is intimidated by you at the office. But at least try to put in some effort if you’re trying to take credit for my work,” says Gemma. 

What you can do: If you face such behavior, it’s best to stand your ground. Present your ideas with enough evidence so they appear legit, and remind everyone that it’s your idea by saying things like, “As I was saying…”.

11. She constantly assesses you

You’ll notice more signs another woman is intimidated by you if you follow her gaze. When faced with a threat, it’s natural for anyone to observe and analyze the threat to think of survival strategies. If this girl feels threatened by you, you’ll notice her going over you with an eagle eye. When a girl stares at you, she notices what you wear, what accessories you carry, and how you walk. 

What you can do: Try to meet her eyes, wave, or smile. Communicate that you notice her. If you ignore her, you just make yourself more intimidating.

12. She excludes you

She begins to treat you as if you’re invisible, even after multiple people remind her of your presence. Upon being confronted about her active efforts to exclude you from plans, she may say that she didn’t bother asking you because you’d have refused anyway.

Research suggests that people behave with us the same way they think we’re behaving with them. This means she believes you’re trying to oust her as well. However, if she’s in awe of you, she’ll try to get another person to reach out to you, and may end up telling them, “She intimidates me, why don’t you ask her?” 

What you can do: Excluding someone is passive-aggressive behavior. Do not engage in this behavior to get back at her. Directly confront her and explain you don’t have any issues with her.

13. She gives you backhanded compliments

Another passive-aggressive strategy that this girl may employ is nitpicking and giving backhanded compliments. She may try to find fault in you, especially in front of others. This Reddit user discovered this the hard way when she was labeled as the “workplace mean girl” for being too focused on her job. 

If she can’t find any faults, she may begin by bringing your character to the dissection table, like suggesting your workplace romance is the reason for your recent promotion. You may dismiss it as jealous behavior, but this is highly suggestive that another woman is threatened by you. 

What you can do: Take this seriously, as this could harm your reputation. Confront her or take this to authorities as this amounts to bullying.

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14. She’s inexplicably competitive

Jocasta from Last Night In Soho got extremely competitive with Eloise, especially upon realizing that Eloise had talent. At one point, when Eloise mentioned that her mother died by suicide, Jocasta buts in saying her uncle died by suicide too. A girl who feels threatened by you will try to compete with you, even on things like when someone treats you badly in a relationship

What you can do: Try not to let this affect your performance or your life. Focus on yourself.  

15. She tries to one-up you

When someone is intimidated by you at work, you’ll notice them trying to prove that they can rake in better numbers than you. Though it’s fair, if you notice this girl adopting strategies that focus on bringing you down, instead of focusing on her progress, then it’s code red. This could mean that she may try to sabotage you or speak ill about you to your seniors. 

What you can do: Don’t let this affect you. If this behavior escalates, report it to authorities.

Relationship Advice for Women

How To Make Yourself Less Intimidating To Other Women

When you consider the signs another woman is intimidated by you, try to analyze if she’s intimidated because she’s in awe of you or because she considers you a threat. If it’s the former:

  • Try to appear approachable: Announce an open-door policy. Organize casual activities where you can have a chance to get to know each other better. Have one-on-one conversations if you can
  • Initiate acquaintance: Try to initiate conversations and assure her that you don’t dislike her. If possible, try to get involved in her life. Ask her questions. Pay compliments
  • Soften up your body language, if you’re comfortable: Try to initiate eye contact. Relax your body while talking to her. Tell her something funny about yourself. Smile, if you can

When a girl is intimidated by another girl because she views her as a threat, she may get aggressive. In such cases, there’s little you can do. You may try to confront her or try to make yourself appear as less of a threat. But remember, this response is triggered by her insecurity. You can try to help her but unless she wants to make an effort in her approach toward others, there’s not much you can do.

Key Pointers

  • Being intimidated has less to do with the traits of an intimidating woman, and more with the insecurity of a person who feels intimidated
  • When someone is intimidated by your looks, they focus on either keeping themselves out of your view or trying to get more attention
  • Body language signs such as avoiding eye contact and stressed body posture can indicate that someone may feel intimidated because of you

What makes someone intimidating is not their stature or looks but how they feel about themselves. Most often, it’s one’s traumatic childhood that makes one get defensive in unfamiliar situations. In such situations, it’s often best to talk and ease their fears. If you can, help this person overcome her insecurity. Try to communicate and suggest that they may have some issues. However, when every conversation turns into an argument, there’s not much you can do. In the end, you can help only those who want to help themselves.


1. Is being intimidating a compliment?

Getting to listen to “she intimidates me” may sound powerful, but it’s just a sign of that person’s low self-esteem, nothing that you can be proud of. The signs another woman is intimidated by you tell you that she sees you as a threat. It may be a good idea to appear threatening in a jungle, but in a society, being termed intimidating may cut you off from others.

2. What causes someone to be intimidating?

The traits of an intimidating woman include strong body language, a deep voice, and a calm and mysterious demeanor. People with power often appear intimidating for these reasons.

3. How do you know if people feel threatened by you?

You need to keep an eye out for signs a woman is threatened by you such as trying to avoid you, excessive stammering, or fawning. Also check their body language, such as avoiding eye contact and maintaining a closed body posture, as those are the most obvious cues.

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