It seems I have a lot to say on the subject of turnoffs so I’ve decided the only logical thing to do is to start a weekly column. Let’s call it #TurnoffTuesday. Please feel free to jump in with your own. I’d love to learn it’s not just me with these burning niggles, these massive turnoff red flags.
This week, I want to talk about rejection. To be precise, men who cannot handle rejection. Apparently, this is quite a few of you. You know who you are…
I understand rejection isn’t easy. In fact, it’s one of the things I feel makes dating the hardest. The fact that someone could turn around to you and say no to your date request, without a care for your feelings or how that negative response will make you feel… It’s scary. They could say they don’t find you physically, sexually or emotionally attractive, or suggest that you’re not the person for them. It doesn’t matter how they dress it up, the fact of the matter is, you’re being rejected. You’re not quite good enough for them. It’s bloody awful.
I’ve been on the end of all sorts of rejection over the last ten years of my epically failing love life and despite what they say, it doesn’t get easier with age or experience. You just kinda learn how to deal with it more productively… Or at least so that you don’t look like a total crazy bitch. Or is that just me?
But despite how unreasonable I’ve been about the times I’ve been rejected, none of them come close to the lengths some men will go to, facing a solid ‘no’ to the face. Let me put it this way, if you weren’t being rejected before, you’re definitely being rejected now… And for a hundred and one extra reasons.
If I’m not into you, I’ll say. I don’t beat around the bush. If I don’t know how I feel, I’ll be honest about that but I won’t string you along. If I don’t think you’re boyfriend material FOR ME, I won’t keep hold of you. I’ll set you free for the rest of the world. I’ll let the other girlies have a chance. I’m not a total plum. I know if it’s not going to work, it’s not going to work regardless of how much I try to force it to.
But sometimes when I tell men I’m not interested, for whatever reason(s), they react in ways I can’t even begin to comprehend. I can understand, almost deal with, the childish “I didn’t like you anyway”, which I’ve been on the receiving end of more than once by the way, but anything other than a “Thanks for letting me know, let’s just pretend we don’t exist or know each other anymore” is just overreacting, especially if we’ve not even met yet.
How can you take personal offence to my rejection? I’ve never met you. I don’t know you enough to find REAL things to object to. The reasons I choose not to pursue a relationship with you are MY personal reasons – I don’t want to date a man with five kids, I don’t want to date a man that spends more time in the gym than he spends with me, I don’t want to date a bald guy because I like hair… Me, me, me, me, me.
Technically, it has nothing to do with you. How can you possibly take offence to that?
Like the one chap who I very early-on realised was far too negative to be a potential new lover. We tried to be friends for a while, but when he failed with another girl and asked me for some advice, the true answer I gave was apparently not the answer he wanted to hear.
You’re single because you’re miserable. Wallowing self-pity is not attractive. I didn’t want to date you for exactly those reasons. I’m trying to be a more positive person. Other women probably feel the same.
I was accused of being jealous of his non-starting relationship with the new girl, sent message after message of total self-pity induced blah, and called a whole bunch of names I won’t repeat. And that was before he started on my personal appearance which is always a great low. Of course I’ll listen to the man who needs to resort to physical, personal digs to win his ‘battle’. The one he was having with himself as I ceased to respond after requesting he politely fuck off.
We’d never met. He was just a guy I met online, a guy I got to know more of and realised he wasn’t my kinda person. That doesn’t make him a bad person. That just makes us two people who don’t have that much in common or anything to talk about. I meet people all the time and don’t date or become friends with them. You can’t seriously expect to get on with everybody… Surely?
It just amazes me how some people take rejection so personally. In fact, it’s not even taking it personally that’s the problem, it’s the outwardly losing-of-shit that’s the problem.
When I split from One Ball three years ago, he cried outside my house. This was a man I’d dated for just eight months yet he physically cried, tears rolling down his cheeks, in broad daylight. I lived on a busy street, people and cars zipping by, yet he stood there for a full twenty minutes, hollering and shouting like some kind of fruit loop. Eight months. Jesus. Too much, my friend, too much.
Why would you let someone see you in that state? I don’t do that. I would never do that. I hate making a scene in public for a start, and secondary to that, I’m not batshit crazy.
When Jock rejected me and spectacularly broke my heart, I handled it horrifically. For a year I became a hermit, sleeping with men but not letting them in, getting way too drunk and making far too many bad decisions. But I didn’t make a spectacle of myself in public. I didn’t stand outside his house, crying and screaming Bloody Mary. I didn’t refuse to give him his stuff back or publicly troll him on social media. I didn’t send endless messages of abuse. Endless messages, yes. But not abuse. Abuse isn’t cool.
When I was rejected by The Director… Okay, fine, we won’t go there. You win on that one. I should have known better. Getting drunk and putting out is probably just as bad as crying outside the house in the middle of the day.
The point I’m trying to make here is that rejection isn’t easy, I get that, but there’s a way to handle it so that it doesn’t make you look like a cock. I wholeheartedly understand that it’s tough. I’ve been on the blunt and depressing end of rejection myself, more than a few times. It’s sad and horrible and miserable. It makes you doubt yourself and everything you stand for. It makes you wonder if you’ll ever be good enough for anyone ever again. If you’ll ever come close to being good enough.
But what’s the point? These people whom you reject or who reject you will fade off into the sunset never to be seen again. They’ll just be a bad memory or a laughable story, something you tell to married friends at parties when they want to live life vicariously through you. Their rejection doesn’t matter. Rejection doesn’t matter. What does this one person’s opinion of you matter? This is someone who wasn’t in your life before and won’t be again. Their opinion or rejection of you is nothing. Worrying about it is pointless. Mulling it around your head for hours on end is pointless. You’re just not their kind of person. Or they’re just not yours. It doesn’t matter. It’s never going to matter again.
I don’t know. It’s just one of those things that turn me off. If I’m rejecting you, it’s because I think we won’t be good together, or because there’s something about you that just doesn’t work with what I’m looking for. It’s not about you. It can’t really be about you. I don’t know you yet. But now I do, and I know you handle rejection like a little bitch, it is about you. If I gotta man up and handle rejection well, so do you.
Blow your nose and stop snivelling.