If there’s anything worse than getting over a broken heart, it might just be having to learn how to reject a guy. This is especially true if you’re not experienced at it or if you’re especially sensitive. When you consider how society often teaches women to be agreeable, the risk posed by someone who isn’t happy to be rejected can be scary.
Of course, this doesn’t mean you should avoid it entirely – just that you need to go about rejecting a man in the smartest way so he will, hopefully, take it well. Not only do most guys appreciate honesty, but you can relieve any guilt and move on to your next potential relationship.
BEFORE YOU REJECT A GUY
Rejection in the age of technology looks a lot different than it did when we were still limited to landline phones. Thanks to social media, we can see when someone is connected and talking to other people, even if they’re not talking to us! This makes it especially important for you to reject a guy as gracefully and as soon as possible – not to leave him hanging! if you wait too long, he might fall in love. Read more about how guys fall in love.
The seriousness of your relationship and the way you’ve been communicating will determine the best – and worst! – ways to reject a guy. Just consider the following.
- If you’ve only been communicating via text, SnapChat, Tinder or a similar service, and you’ve yet to meet, then it’s okay to let him down easy via that method.
- However, it’s rude to reject or break up with someone through these means if you’ve talked extensively on the phone or met in person several times.
- In situations where you’ve seriously been flirting or have slept together, a phone call or face-to-face meeting is a better route to go.
While there may be situations in which you can’t call or meet, such as when distance and time zones make it impossible, it’s more respectable to let someone down in person. A phone call is the next best option. It’s hard to break up or reject a guy, make no mistake, but sometimes the easier way isn’t the right way.
You definitely don’t want to have him find out you’re rejecting him because you changed your relationship status online or through friends. Ouch!
LET’S TALK ABOUT GHOSTING
Ghosting is a relatively new phenomenon. With so many communications happening over text, it’s easy to simply stop replying. If you’ve ever been in this position, you know how much it hurts. This is especially true if someone seemed into you or you had sex. They go quiet, and you’re left wondering if you should text him.
When you’re in that position, your reaction might be to keep sending messages to gauge his interest. Of course, that’s bad advice. If he is just stringing you along, he knows you’ll always be there.
When it’s your turn to figure out how to reject a man, ghosting can also go sideways. How? For starters, you might become the object of desire which is receiving tons of messages from someone who is insecure and confused because you’re sending mixed signals. It’s annoying, but think about how you might feel in that situation. Wouldn’t you have preferred that someone be upfront with you?
It might seem easier to give a hint and ghost on someone than actually rejecting him, but it’s not very kind and can cause undue heartache when someone doesn’t get the hint!
TIPS TO REJECT A GUY
- Do it as soon as possible. Once you’re sure there’s no potential, then plan a way to reject him.
- A lot of times, women try to avoid hurting a guy’s feelings by saying something like “I’m just not ready for a relationship now.” While that might hurt both of you less in the present, it can lead to problems in the future. Perhaps he thinks he has a chance in the future when you know he doesn’t. He might wait around when he should be getting over you. This is a tricky line.
- Apologize if you feel the need to, but recognize that these things happen. You might have confused flirtation or lust for a stronger feeling. Perhaps you got ahead of yourself and led him on more than you intended to. However, you don’t need to feel excess guilt, and you definitely shouldn’t let him guilt you into taking it back!
- This leads us to our next point: don’t back down. If you’re sure you need to reject him, don’t give in if he begs, pleads or even gets angry. This is a terrible way to start a relationship. It will never be balanced, and you’ll only grow resentful.
- Be honest but don’t tell him everything. It’s okay to say your heart just isn’t in it or that you don’t feel a spark. You don’t need a laundry list of the ways you’re not compatible or to rub his nose in what you consider to be his personal failings. If he demands to know why, consider what will make him – and you – feel better. But you don’t necessarily owe him any explanation, honestly.
- Let him know if you want to be friends, but don’t say this if it isn’t true. If you’re not interested in talking at all, don’t lead him on in that way. Remember, too, that some guys will use the “friend zone” to try to weasel their way in your heart. Learn more here.
- Take time after you reject him. It’s probably a good idea not to talk, at least not frequently, right after you reject a guy. The same is true when you’re trying to get over a crush. This could make him think he has a chance when he doesn’t or that you didn’t mean the rejection. It can also help you if you’re experiencing any confusion about how you feel. If you give him some time for his feelings to cool off, you might be able to become awesome friends later.
- Don’t do it as part of a date. You’ll be nervous as you wait the entire time, and he’ll have no idea what he’s in store for. Then, there’s always the issue of who pays or drives. If he’s asking for another date, let him know how you feel instead of just agreeing to one.
The best approach when learning how to reject a guy is really the direct one. Something like ‘I’m sorry, but I’m just not feeling this” gets your message across without being too harsh and without encouraging him to stick around for you to change your mind.
PREPARE FOR THE WORST
It would be great if you could figure out how to reject a guy without any negative consequences, but that’s not always the case. There are some situations that you might want to prepare for when you’re rejecting him.
- You work or go to school together. You’ll see each other occasionally or even on a daily basis. Of course, you shouldn’t have to quit your job, but can you switch shifts, departments or classes to make it easier?
- He could become violent. Hopefully, this doesn’t happen, but in a culture that teaches men to be entitled as often as ours does, he might react extremely poorly to being rejected. Perhaps he could become obsessive. He might damage your property, break into your home or attempt to hurt you. If this guy has a dark side, it might be easier to break up in a public space for your own safety, but you’ll want to keep an eye out after the initial rejection for any warning signs.
- He spreads lies. It might sound like something that should be left behind in middle school, but this is a behavior that grown men and women sometimes engage in, unfortunately. If he’s telling lies to someone at work, it could damage your career. Consider giving the appropriate people, such as coworkers or mutual friends, a heads up. Let them know that you’re being thoughtful about how you reject him. While they may still believe him over you, remaining calm works in your favor. In the future, look for guys who aren’t a work in progress. (It’s okay, we’ve all been in those types of relationships!)
Hopefully, everything will go well if you’ve been honest and kind, but sometimes that’s not the case. But just because there are potential negative consequences doesn’t mean you should avoid rejecting a man. The longer you wait, the more it will hurt him when you finally do end things. Then, you might have something to feel sorry about.