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I'm concerned because a new player just joined our D&D 5e group and is super flirty with all the male players (both in person and as her character - she's a bard). And the problem is that she's changed the whole vibe of our gaming group. We used to be a really cohesive team, and now almost every decision takes ages to make because the guys are defending all her stupid ideas and not acting from their characters' perspectives. Even our online chats with the DM are strangely sexual now.

The new player is completely NEW to D&D (a complete beginner), and we only met her recently when the DM said she could join the group. Our group is not a friends-group; we met through a gaming group online. The DM likes to get people interested in D&D, so that's how she got in the door. Our group is aged in their 20s; I think (3 of us are over 35). We have mixed genders and mixed ethnicities (though most Australians). Most players are beginners (except 2 of us who grew up playing D&D in the 80s- I'm 1 of such).

I am a female player in the group, but it's not an issue of jealousy for me. If she's super flirty, it reflects badly on her, and in any case, if she "succeeds" in finding a partner, it doesn't bother me. I don't care if people date in our group (we already have a couple in the group).

The issue is that, since she joined our campaign, our team dynamic (in game) has changed. One such problem is that her character is a level 1, and we're all higher levels, so we're constantly trying to "save" her. I find it really annoying that the guys act all "smitten" and can't see she just has changed our group dynamic. It's a rift, and I don't know what to do to fix it.

I have mentioned my problem with this to the DM, who suggests we play harder campaigns. But the DM has not made any decision to kill her character off either way. Do we kill her? Or level her up? Or...?

The net problem is that decisions are taking too long, and the dynamic of the group is leaning on sexual-tension instead of gameplay.

Please share how you have seen a similar problem resolved using our site's Good Subjective/Bad Subjective guidelines; specifically, back up your answer with relevant experience or citations. An "idea you think might be good" without any evidence isn't a good answer.

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Since I started DMing D&D a long, long time ago, I found that the dynamics of a mixed group of male ande female players is a tad different from a one-sex only group of players. This is purely anecdotal, however, and fruit of my own experiences and by no means is representative of the general gamer population.

Note that, for the purposes of the following text, the DM is not considered a player. All of those observations were made from a male DM point of view. Also, on Brazil, sexism in game-related matters is almost non-existent, so we DMs have usually one less problem to deal with.

Onwards to my experiences!

1) All-female and all-male groups are completely different beasts.

When you DM to an all-male group, often the group takes the more common adventure, action-oriented group with some roleplay sprinkled here and there. While individually they may show interest in romance or drama-oriented games, as a group they tend to prefer the classical D&D experience. Male players also tend to be more individualistic but not outright selfish. All-female groups show more cohesive, group-oriented behavior and they show a preference for more acting instead of more action. Their roleplay is usually deeper and they tend to avoid more fights than their male counterparts. They don't necessarily seek for romance oriented games but they don't avoid it either - if it shows up on the board, they tend to embrace it more gracefully than their male counterparts.

2) Groups where only one player is from a different gender are most of the time indistinguishable from a one-gender only group when sexist behavior is absent.

When you have a single female on a male-dominated group, the female player normally conforms and behaves just as "one of the guys". You don't usually notice flirting on the table, but when it happens it is between a single couple of players, not in a more generalized manner as described on the OP. Females in this setting take on noticeably more masculine behaviors while in group - even the way they tend to sit changes a bit, with a more comfortable, laid-back posture. You can also observe them openly burping, making typical dirty jokes that males normally are famous for, and other plethora of male-associated behaviors.

When the situation is reversed - a single male in a female-dominated group - the opposite situation happens and that lonely guy becomes "one of the girls" and the experience ends up the same as a female-players-only group. Even usually macho-mode guys end up accepting "girly stuff" in this group setting - they tend to behave in a more polite and educated way, rarely do dirty jokes, and even enroll on more female-oriented roles in-game, such as maternity or romantic drama. I also noticed that a single guy in a female-dominated group is more open to experiment more feminine stuff - like hot-pink nail polish, acne creams, and even a bit of makeup - when presented the option by their female peers. I saw this happen four times already with four different male players, so I don't think it was a specific characteristic of a single player.

3) Two female players in a male-dominated group or two male players in a female-dominated group creates more tension than more mixed or more homogeneous groups.

There is an interesting effect that appears to happen when you have a group with two people of the a given gender together with three or more people of the other gender. I'm not sure why this happens, but the change in group dynamics is evident. This is something I call "queen-bee effect". It happens almost the same way for two guys in a group of females or two females in a group of guys, but the females-in-group-of-guys is way more noticeable.

When you have a setting like this one, the two players of the gender that is under-represented at the table almost always start to compete with each other for dominance. They tend to be increasingly flirtatious (females) or chivalrous (males) regarding the players of the other gender and start to push forward their ideas while putting away the ideas of their "rival". They also seem to become way more stressed out during gaming, focusing more on competing with their rival than enjoying the game by itself. This effect is somewhat harmless in males-in-female-group but can be really disruptive in a female-in-male-group.

A player sometimes enters what I call the "Queen-bee Mode", in which they try "rule" over the table and be the only player of a given gender that gets the other gender attention. Females in queen-bee mode are usually more provocative, flirtatious, and back-stabbing than they are in other group settings, while males tend to be more assertive, chivalrous, and aggressive.

What you are experiencing sounds somewhat like this - this new player is acting like a queen-bee, trying to get the male attention for herself while reducing the other female on the table (you) to a "worker drone" state. When she reinforces her sexuality, she becomes the female symbol for the group, putting a shadow over the fact that you are also a female. I'm not sure from where this behavior comes, but that usually means that she is jealous of you, not the other way around.

The queen-bee effect is especially present in LARPS.

4) Mixed groups with at least three players from each gender are way more manageable than the group setting presented in my observation #3

More mixed groups with somewhat equally represented genders tend to behave way better than a group with a underrepresented gender. In those settings, while the Queen-bee effect may exist, it is rarer and less significant. This group setting is normally more balanced and more friendly. You will probably end up with two players in the leading position of the group, one for each gender. While one of them will be the "official group leader", the other one will have as much influence as the first one, even if it is not recognized. Think about how your father and mother behaved at your home - most of time, while the father seemed like "the head" of the family, the mother had as much power (if not more!) than him during the decision making. Sure, it was an indirect, more subtle decision power, but it was power anyways.

From what I could observe, there are actually two groups in this setting: a "female group" and a "male group". Those two groups, while working together and pushing forward towards the goal of the adventure, seem to pack up differently while making decisions both out and inside the game. Normally, the male lead-player will give a suggestion and will be backed up by the other male players, while being confronted by the female leader which is in turn backed up by the other female players. In a sense, this setting seems more like DMing to two homogeneous groups that happen to work together instead of a single, heterogeneous supergroup. As time passes, however, the groups will mingle up and become more cohesive, more intense friendships will develop, and you'll end up with a healthy, diverse group of friends.

Heck, you may even end up forming real-life romantic couples with a setting like this. For some reason, role-playing being in love with someone can sometimes have a weird reflection on real-life and you end up actually being in love with someone.

Well, that's how I ended marrying my SO, at least!

The Bottom Line and What You Should Do

You can do two things, in this situation, but first you need to understand why she is doing what she is doing. She probably doesn't even realize that what she is doing isn't really nice to you. So, my first recommendation is to talk to her. Not to discuss this and ask her to change, but in a friendly, open way. Even giggle a bit while talking to her. Put her behavior on the spot, but in a lighter tone. Comment about how it is funny, some of the jokes and all, but tell her that you are not used to it and sometimes feel uncomfortable. Always keep the light tone, however. Show her that this behavior of hers is making you feel vulnerable, and a bit alienated. Approach her as a fellow human and as a potential friend. Try to change a bit of the rivalry she has with you to friendship. If she understands that you - her potential new friend - is feeling a bit bad because the way she behaves, she may very well tone it down a bit. Don't expect it to disappear - she's a queen-bee after all - but it may very well become way more manageable.

Failing that, open yourself to your DM. Tell him that she is making you uncomfortable but you want to keep playing with them, make the suggestion to start a second group without her, on a different schedule. It may even be just you, another player and the DM, or even you and the DM.

He may very well accept that - smaller groups are easier to manage and you can create deeper, more interesting tales that way.

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    \$\begingroup\$ Your points seems to be common for any group activity, not only for D&D. I experienced the same multiple times in various World of Warcraft guilds, and I think I can recognize this pattern outside RPGs too. \$\endgroup\$ – BgrWorker Jan 13 '17 at 10:32
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    \$\begingroup\$ Your comments seem also to lead to another possible solution - try to introduce another girl or two into the group so it's not just you two. \$\endgroup\$ – niemiro Jan 14 '17 at 15:07
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    \$\begingroup\$ Hm. Have you ever played with people who were adult about all this, who don't feel an urge to "reassert their sexuality" or similar but are comfortably and confidently just themselves? Because I play and have played with mixed-sex groups all the time, both table and LARP, both people of my age (40+) and much younger players (~20), and I haven't encountered any of the mechanics you're describing for a LONG time... (ever since the people involved came out of puberty, mostly...) \$\endgroup\$ – DevSolar Jan 16 '17 at 14:24
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    \$\begingroup\$ @DevSolar I did, and that's why I took care to describe this as my observations and not representative of the whole gamming community. As you can see by other comments and their upvotes, those situations I described are not exceptional. But, well, to be fair mostly of my games were with the younger audience (15~25 years), so it may be an age thing, too. \$\endgroup\$ – T. Sar - Reinstate Monica Jan 16 '17 at 14:30
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    \$\begingroup\$ @DevSolar As far as I can tell, this is more common on the "meet up and play" than with already established friendships. RPGs are somewhat of a new thing on Brazil - the hobby only kinda exploded with the second edition of VtM - and most of the players aren't the D&D type. But you are certainly correct. Older, more mature people hardly experience those problems! \$\endgroup\$ – T. Sar - Reinstate Monica Jan 16 '17 at 15:37
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In game

It is not an in-game problem. It needs to be solved out of game…

Well, kinda. Her character being weaker might mean that she is over compensating and solution to this problem here.

Meta game

Having been in several situations not too dissimilar to yours, both within RPG and outside, group dynamic issues are almost always dealt best by talking to the group, or a sub set of the group. However, an outcome acceptable by all is not always possible.

Talk to her

Being flirty does get you attention so maybe she is using that to make her feel accepted as she is the new kid on the block. Maybe there is another reason. Maybe she just does not see it. Whatever, you need to talk to her about your perceived conflict that you see between the two of you. Maybe even ask why she feels the need to be behave in a flirty way.

You have problem with her behaviour, so you need to talk to her about it.

Unless you have a lot of experience in being diplomatic and conflict resolution, I suggest you are crystal clear that it is a concern you want solved. Forget subtle, be obvious that you want a solution so you can all continue to be friends and play the game. Clearly do this outside of the game, face to face, and alone with her. Soak any punch she throws at you and do not rise to them. This is hard1 but try. Remember: raise the standard of your arguments, not your voice.

Criticise (read: discuss in a none-threatening or aggressive way) how her actions are perceived, never her nor the other players. Try to show her what her unintentional actions affect the rest of the group. Always strive for coming up with a solution, not assigning blame.

Hopefully, she will respond well and both of you will be able to come up with a solution. If she does not, keep on reading.

Talk to the GM

There is a problem. They might have some thought on how to fix it. Again, you must use diplomacy when talking to the GM. Most of the same advise as above applies to be honest. I cannot stress this enough: look for solutions, not exposing problems.

Hopefully, both of you will be able to come up with a solution. If not, keep on reading.

Take a break from the game

You are not enjoying yourself and you tried to fix it. It is not working. Take a break. It's hard. It can mean leaving a lot of fun things behind for a while. Pursue another thing you always wanted to do. Find another group to role play with. But do not get trapped in a situation that you hate.

Just make sure you do not throw your toys out of the pram, or more likely are perceived to do so. Make sure you frame your departure as you not enjoying the game as much as you were.


1: Understatement of the year… This wiki how might help although it is getting beyond the scope of this site to teach diplomacy. Nonetheless, it is a skill well worth picking up for life at and beyond the gaming table.

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It is super hard to make recommendations not knowing the dynamics of your group... Sometimes it just doesn't work...

Just to pick out one particular detail:

And moreover, her character is a level 1 and we're all higher levels so we're constantly trying to "save" her

To run it this way seems an odd DM decision to me. If her character can't participate in the mechanics of the game at the same level as the rest of you I can see how it would lead to her using the RP end of it to gain a more 'equal footing' and feel like she's participating. Any game I've played where a new player drops in has always granted the new player free levels to within shouting distance of the other players.

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    \$\begingroup\$ [Related] Should I boost a new player's character level to match the rest of the group? \$\endgroup\$ – SevenSidedDie Jan 12 '17 at 10:05
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    \$\begingroup\$ +1 Keeping characters in on level pegging balance wise is important to stop having to save the minion/sidekick all the time \$\endgroup\$ – Rob Jan 12 '17 at 10:14
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    \$\begingroup\$ It's not odd, you just have to have a good GM and the right group of players. \$\endgroup\$ – Kevin Jan 12 '17 at 15:10
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Kevin Let's be honest. It's odd to have a good GM AND a the right group of players. Most RPG experiences involve a lot of overhead to make the group work right. \$\endgroup\$ – T. Sar - Reinstate Monica Jan 12 '17 at 16:25
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I don't think simply "killing off her character" will fix this. Doing so opens up the possibility of only making things worse. Players can get frustrated if they feel like they're being targeted purposefully, and if other players are also "on their side", it can affect the relationship with them too. If you dig a hole underneath one person, there's a likelihood the entire floor will collapse too.

Your best bet is to talk to the DM, and to the group, and especially to her, about how you feel her actions are affecting the group dynamic. The group is meant to be a team, and "splitting the party" always leads to bad outcomes.

Avoid the association of player behaviour with the PC.

A player that is attempting to destroy the group dynamic is a problem, and can lead to the whole group falling out. However, a PC's behaviour is not something to be judged (except for the case of "My Guy" syndrome). If it were, players would not be able to create a chaotic evil alcoholic pickpocket in a party of clerics and monks.

PC level differences can also have an adverse affect. If one player is under-levelled compared to the rest of the party (one level 1 player in a party of level 5's), they are definitely going to have a hard time keeping up with the rest of the party. Talk to the DM about possibly boosting the player level to better suit the rest of the party. (You can read more about this issue here).

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    \$\begingroup\$ Thanks Ben, I think her roleplay is cool. She's an entertainer with high CHA, so flirty makes sense in a way. It's the fact her flirtiness extend beyond the gaming into everything else... everything has a sexual connotation! I'll speak to the DM again :) \$\endgroup\$ – MsGreen Jan 12 '17 at 7:55
  • \$\begingroup\$ Do you have any experience you can talk about that has led you to this answer? As it stands this seems very generic and poorly supported. \$\endgroup\$ – Ceribia Jan 12 '17 at 8:58
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Ceribia, group dynamic issues are almost always dealt with beat by talking to the group. I have personally been through this kind of issue before (and also posted about it here), all of which have received the "talk to them " response. \$\endgroup\$ – Ben Jan 12 '17 at 9:01
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Ben I agree with you, I'm just looking at how to support that in the answer so it's not quite so subjective. Something along the lines of the Back It Up principle. \$\endgroup\$ – Ceribia Jan 12 '17 at 9:04
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    \$\begingroup\$ I strongly disagree with "a PC's behaviour is not something to be judged". Beware of My Guy syndrome. \$\endgroup\$ – Anne Aunyme Jan 12 '17 at 9:47
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Maybe it would be better to start with talking but this is a solution from someone who is quite bad with the "talk with people" approach.

I had a different problem, yet I think the solution can work for you. As a GM I ran a game for a team of beginners (called here B,C and D), except one player who was a bit more experienced (let's call him E) but also much more talkative. I noticed the beginners followed the lead of E, and took less and less initiative, seeing that E's ideas were always good ones.

This wasn't fun. It was like running the game for one player with three spectators. I tried giving special powers to the beginners to implicate them more, but it didn't work: the simply waited for E to tell them when to use them.

Finally I solved it by adding a little bit of "PvP". After B got a boon as a reward after some quest I told him (between two sessions) that the boon had a hidden power but if he mentioned it even once to anyone it would vanish forever. It was a key power for a situation next session and it forced him to do something which went against E's plan. It was the occasion for everyone to see that in some situation following E's lead wasn't the best solution.

Your situation present some similarities with that: a relation between the player (for my situation "leader-follower", for yours "flirters") transposes into the game and it makes it unfun (for you at least).

What I recommend you to do is to think as your character. I don't know her but for what I read I guess in her situation I wouldn't want in the party a lvl 1 character who spread dissension: go (in-character) have an argument with her. Create some tension! Threaten her to broke her harp or to kill his puppy if she doesn't stop (I don't recommend to threaten her to be left behind because this is ambiguous and can be seen as a threat toward the player as there is a group of PCs but also a group of players)

Obviously the male flirters will try to defend her, so try to do that when their characters are not here (but preferentially when the players are here, so they can notice the tension they may have missed between your two characters)

After this make it clear it was only a in-character argument and nothing more.


This answer makes the assumption that your group's style of gaming is not pvp-ophobe. In case of doubt, tell the GM what you are planning and avoid this if he just frown upon you. If he disagrees you can still ask that some NPC takes your role in this plan.

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I'd like to pose a question to consider before my advice. You mentioned that she is slowing down the game on one hand, but the players are defending her "stupid ideas"on the other. These two points seem to be in conflict with one another, as on one hand I see something that would frustrate the rest of the party--slowing down---and on the other, it seems like they are patiently rolling with her decisions. Perhaps they are hoping that she will gain experience and grow out of this behavior. My question to ponder is this: How does the rest of your group feel?

Ok, onward to advice. Full disclosure, I've been that annoying flirty bard character before. Granted, I was a teenager back then, but over time I matured and I'd like to think I've grown into a better player. I look back on that first game and cringe, but at the time, I was having fun. I don't know if I would have fallen so in love with the game had someone criticized my character during my first game, even though I probably deserved it. I admit that I was a bit sensitive back then, and not to say she is the same way, but sometimes these characters allow us to be the characters we are unable to be in real life. It can be a reflection of who we want to be. I was shy, so my flirty bard allowed me out of my shell. As I leveled and became familiar with everything my bard could do, I suddenly didn't have much time to be flirty and annoying, I was too busy planning my next move.

So based on my path, my advice is to arm her with knowledge! Next time she comes to play, and you all are getting settled in, bring up some options for her character before the game begins. It might be something like "Hey! I was skimming through my player's handbook today and noticed that your bard could do this..." It would give her something to think about, and show that another player has vested interest in her actually being a productive group member. You also might stumble upon a helpful bard video on YouTube to link her, or point out how awesome Scanlan is on Critical Role. Give her a better option than something like "I flash the innkeeper to get a discount." The more you know!

I guess I'll second that it seems odd that your DM started her at lvl 1. On one hand I can see that maybe it's less overwhelming to learn your character basics at that level--especially if you are new to D&D 5e. Depending on how far away you guys are from her, it almost seems like she was set up to fail though. Clearly, this would be entirely dependent on how your DM is handling the differential, but for what it's worth, my advice on this account would be to speak with your DM about the issues you are facing as a party with this mechanic, as it's likely the cause of some of her behavior. It's easy to rationalize doing something silly when you feel like anything you could do wouldn't be a significant contribution anyway. Food for thought.

Edit--Sorry to bring this question up from the dead. Just noticed it was several months old, but found it through a related question. Hope all is going well and your player has leveled up in the game, and in her social skills!

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The question looks like the problem of the character and player behavior being synonymous. So...

Find out if the problem is the player's personality

Your own perception of that person is important to this matter, and while you might not be jealous of her, that doesn't mean you don't judge her irrationally in certain situations because you don't like the fact that her introduction to the party changed your D&D experience. If her character has a similar personality, it's not farfetched to argue that you might apply the same judgement to her character because of that.

Having a character being based on the player's character isn't unusual, as especially when starting to role-play, it's easier to fit in a role that's close to your own personality, or an idealized form of it. I have yet to see a shy personality jumping right into playing a vividly flirty character, or roleplay it as you described. If you do less roleplay than simply action-taking and slaying dragons in your group, chances are even bigger you're going to automatically going to think of the character's and the player's personality as one and the same.

All of the above is less of an issue than something you should be aware of when tackling this problem. In any case, I would be careful about criticism of any kind that could discourage a player from a certain behavior, as it might be the one thing that makes them want to play the game in the first place. Role-playing games are playgrounds for fantasy, allowing players to do what they want outside of any boundaries of the real world. If approached about their behaviour by another person, telling them they should stop doing something, though, chances are that they will be anxious to behave in a way that seems fun to them, and possibly even refrain from similar actions, for being afraid they'll step on someone's toes - I know I act that way when I'm playing, in an effort to make everyone happy. This has the potential to damage your group long-term, though, as you'll now have a player that will gauge their actions versus what other players (not in-game characters) supposedly want.

Find out if it's a problem for the in-game party

A new character changing how the party behaves sounds rather positive, and depending on the group's style. A flirty character that uses their "charisma" to get other party members to do what they want can be very interesting and fun. If your in-game party was always efficient, forcing the group to deal with something that's not easily solveable by violence or intelligence can be a great thing for a party.

Even if the situation is problematic in-game, this should resolve itself in a perfect world. If the character would be too annoying, dangerous, or otherwise bothersome to the party, they would get rid of that character in-game, either by parting ways or more violent solutions. I have, however, seen players making a character that clashes with everyone in the party, but the player group tries to go with it in order to make it work for the player group - the in-game characters would have long gotten rid of that character, but their players decide to stick around with them for a while longer because that character's player would have to discard a character that they spent a long time on creating, and would either be forced to make a new one while the other players wait for that, or even leave the game group.

Yet, if there's no such issue, the in-game action should be left alone entirely, as then you have an issue between players, not player characters.

Find out if it's a problem for the group of players

I've known players preferring social- or combat-centric gameplay, so your mileage of the above may vary - But I found that especially in groups that existed for a while, a change of pace often contributes to the overall experience, even if it feels alien at first.

There's the possibility that the other players don't mind, apprechiate a flirty character as well as a flirty player, or notice the problem as well, but are the type of player that will try to make every party work, or simply can't muster the courage to bring it up or will only talk about it with a third person; all of which I've seen before from the third person's perspective (which is likely the most insightful one).
There's also the possibility that the rest of the group is also estranged by the style changes and just go with it for the time being because they don't want to discourage or even insult the new player.

For pretty much every group I've been in, if they predominantly featured one gender, players tend to cater towards the players of the other, in an effort to keep them in the group even if it means that their preferred environment becomes a little less comfortable.

Why you shouldn't solely burden your DM with it

Either way, you may be the only player that has an issue with the situation, and as such you should voice your concerns not to the DM but to either the group or that player in an effort to find out about it.

On top of that, if you solely consult your DM (who is just a person as well, will have their own subjective opinion of the situation, and might be equally irrational in their behaviour for the reasons given above), you're putting pressure on that person for being the one tasked to resolve a situation they themselves might not have a problem with.

As stated in the beginning, I don't believe this problem can be solved in the game. If you have your DM attempt to do so anyway, you're also risking them applying a fix that won't fix anything. I've experienced a DM adjusting the scenario in the attempt to solve a specific social problem, which did not have the intended result and everyone - including the player originally addressing the issue - ended up disappointed and less satisfied than with the original situation.

Of course, your DM is likely also the one with the most effort to begin with, as preparing scenarios is harder work than preparing a spell list, for example. From what I've seen, they're also often the ones hosting sessions or take care about food; in other words are generally managing the role-playing game's fortunes. That might make them appear as the perfect person to address, but in reality, it just adds to their already big list of things.

Summary

As we don't know what your whole group of people are like, it's hard to give you advice on a good approach, and I don't see a way to give concrete advice as much as pointers as what you should do next. To summarize the above:

  • find out what the motives of the new player are by talking to them. Maybe she's the devil and tries to part you, but it's much more likely that she doesn't have evil intentions and either doesn't realize what's going on, or at least has a different viewpoint for you to consider.
  • find out if your group is also unhappy about this by talking to them. If they are, you might want to have a conversation including everyone to hopefully resolve the issue, or find out why it can't be resolved.

As with the in-game situation, you won't be able to solve your problems with intelligence alone, as the subject is a social, possibly even emotional one, and each person involved will likely have different opinions about it.

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    \$\begingroup\$ Do you have some experience you can use to back up this answer? This is an interesting view point but it seems more like speculation fit for the back and forth of a forum than a cohesive stack answer. \$\endgroup\$ – Ceribia Jan 12 '17 at 9:00
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Ceribia: What I wrote is all based on personal experience, though I like to phrase answers from a general perspective to avoid sounding like it would only apply to a certain situation. Every player constellation is different, and assuming anything outside of experiences with that specific group is hit or miss, so describing my own experiences would likely not help. That might even make a precise answer impossible. If you could go into more detail what you'd like clarified, or get additional information or input on, I'll try to provide it. \$\endgroup\$ – TheThirdMan Jan 12 '17 at 9:38
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    \$\begingroup\$ We do prefer answers backed up by specific experience. If it does not exactly match, to be honest that is helpful for the reader to better validate its relevance, evaluate its effectiveness, and adapt it to their particular circumstances. It also helps separate the sounds-good-but-questionable-worth armchair advice from the hard-earned wisdom. \$\endgroup\$ – SevenSidedDie Jan 12 '17 at 9:48
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    \$\begingroup\$ I understand the point, but I'm not sure on how to proceed from here - I've described my concerns in this Meta post to not crowd the comments with discussion. \$\endgroup\$ – TheThirdMan Jan 12 '17 at 10:35
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    \$\begingroup\$ +1, personally I think this is the best answer. It's hard to tell from the question if there's actually a problem that is affecting the whole group, or if it's just her, so that's the main thing she should figure out. \$\endgroup\$ – DCShannon Jan 12 '17 at 21:40
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The issue isn't her gender; the issue is her personality. That's backed up by the fact that, as you stated, she's not the first or only girl in the group.

You and your friends need to talk and decide, as a group, if you want her to keep joining you. If her desire for sexual validation is messing up your dynamic, that needs to be addressed. If she just doesn't understand the game and is making bad decisions as a player, slow down and explain okay you rush the orc but you're only level one and so you'll probably miss and even if you hit, he's strong enough to kill you in one hit. Then let her die and take con loss. You guys can go on a crazy fun side adventure to raise her character while she browses snapchat stories or whatever. Low level characters (relative to a party) can be fun a fun addition if they're played well and the other players don't mind looking out for them, but they can be no fun at all if the player is stupid/foolish with their fragile little snowflake, or if the other members of the party aren't interested in carrying a little weight for the newbie. Anyway, I think the most important thing is that once you guys have talked, take whatever issues you have up with her, not her character (eg: don't just kill her off).

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Without knowing more, part of the problem is probably that she is a lower level, it generally creates a weird power dynamic.

It's quite simply a DM mistake to have her start at level 1 if the other players are higher level, have her start at whatever level the other players are, it is more fun for both a newcomer and the other players, since she will both feel more useful, and actually be so.

Forcing someone to start at a lower level is the kind of thing DM horror stories are made of, and it is a decision that boggles the mind if your DM actually cares about getting new people interested in D&D.

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Become friends with her IRL! Buy her a gift and hang out before or after a game session. She may be flirting with the boys because she secretly wants a mentor but is intimidated by you, the more experienced female player. Consider her position: being level 1 in a complicated team-based game she has never played before (and possibly not having read the rules yet). She is consistently a "damsel in distress" because her puny character level and her neophyte knowledge of game mechanics force her into that position. Your character should take her on as a protege until she becomes comfortable and can exercise independence. Girl power!

Alternatively, she is just roleplaying her bard really well, and you're annoyed because bards are annoying. I mean, seriously. We're all getting chopped up by axes and scorched by fire spells, and this bard is just standing in the corner playing a flute?

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    \$\begingroup\$ Have you experienced this resolving similar situations for yourself or for others? Speaking about that would be helpful, and backing up advice with experience of how it's worked out is part of our requirements for Good Subjective answers. (See how should I provide examples of experience as support for my answer?) \$\endgroup\$ – doppelgreener Jan 17 '17 at 22:49
  • \$\begingroup\$ I agreed... until we got to: Alternatively, she is just roleplaying her bard really well, and you're annoyed because bards are annoying. I mean, seriously. We're all getting chopped up by axes and scorched by fire spells, and this bard is just standing in the corner playing a flute? No evidence is given that the OP had any qualms about the bard class. Bards are amazing, and thanks to 5e are not, "Annoying". My College of Swords Bard keeps pace with both the champion fighter and the Pact of the Blade Warlock in melee, with competitive hit points. Bards Rock! \$\endgroup\$ – Samara Markcosian Oct 29 at 11:49

protected by Oblivious Sage Oct 29 '18 at 2:40

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