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How to let someone know you are not interested without hurting them ?


Shycarrot
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Hello 🙂

 

I am a 28 years old female that has started dating again a few weeks ago

But I am always facing the same issue... It's going to sound silly but I really have a hard time letting someone know that I don't want to see them any further, especially if the guy seems nice. 

I usually let the conversation die after the first date but I know it's a horrible/more hurtful way to manage the situation. It's one of my flaws : I don't know how to say "no" in general

For instance, I went on a date yesterday. The guy was really sweet and shy, he insisted on paying my coffee and we talked for about 2 hours. 

I don't think I am attracted to him. Physically, I think there was no chemistry. Plus, I don't think our personalities will match in the long run and I don't think I am interested in him romantically. 

However, he really seemed genuinely kind. He suggested he struggled in his love life, which made me empathize with him. 

He texted me yesterday saying "I look forward to seeing you again" and I froze up. I haven't replied yet, which must be really hurtful for him. But at the same time, I don't know what to say ...

 

How do you usually handle this situation ? How should I do ? 

The last guy I went on a date with was so self-absorbed and insensitive that it was much easier to handle. 

 

Thank you very much 

I know my thread seems a little immature considering my age

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12 minutes ago, Shycarrot said:

He texted me yesterday saying "I look forward to seeing you again" and I froze up. I haven't replied yet, which must be really hurtful for him. But at the same time, I don't know what to say ...

It's ok to simply state you're not a match and free both yourselves to move forward. Alternatively, when meeting, if there is no chemistry, stay long enough to be polite but then shake hands and simply say "nice meeting you" and do not chitchat further. It's best not to give out your number for this reason. Just meet after a few exchanges on the dating app.

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40 minutes ago, Shycarrot said:

Hello 🙂

 

I am a 28 years old female that has started dating again a few weeks ago

But I am always facing the same issue... It's going to sound silly but I really have a hard time letting someone know that I don't want to see them any further, especially if the guy seems nice. 

I usually let the conversation die after the first date but I know it's a horrible/more hurtful way to manage the situation. It's one of my flaws : I don't know how to say "no" in general

For instance, I went on a date yesterday. The guy was really sweet and shy, he insisted on paying my coffee and we talked for about 2 hours. 

I don't think I am attracted to him. Physically, I think there was no chemistry. Plus, I don't think our personalities will match in the long run and I don't think I am interested in him romantically. 

However, he really seemed genuinely kind. He suggested he struggled in his love life, which made me empathize with him. 

He texted me yesterday saying "I look forward to seeing you again" and I froze up. I haven't replied yet, which must be really hurtful for him. But at the same time, I don't know what to say ...

 

How do you usually handle this situation ? How should I do ? 

The last guy I went on a date with was so self-absorbed and insensitive that it was much easier to handle. 

 

Thank you very much 

I know my thread seems a little immature considering my age

Thank him for the date and let him know you’re not a match. While numerous topics may come up in a span of two hours, self-pity is a red flag. That’s a person who doesn’t feel good about himself palming off that issue onto you, a stranger or someone he just met. Not ok. 

 

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It's good that you're doing casual coffee meets rather than full dates. You may want to frame them better when you set them up.

You can say, "How about a quick meet for coffee, do you have a half hour on Thursday?"

This puts a cap on the time. Then, "Let's agree that neither will try to set up a new date on the spot, but either can extend an invitation afterward. If the answer is yes, the other responds, but if not, then no response is necessary. Is that okay with you?"

This takes the squirmy rejection stuff off the table, especially given that most people are just not a good match.

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It's never easy, and you will no doubt also experience disappointment in a guy you like on a first meet, but he's not interested. Think of how you would like to be told the news. When I did OLD, I would say: I enjoyed meeting you but don't feel the chemistry I need for a longterm relationship. I wish you the best.

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Simple "You are a great guy but I just dont see this progressing further" is enough. Dont ignore him, he deserves a straight answer. And dont offer friendship, its disingenous and you both deserve to search further for somebody who would like you as much as you like them.

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I never did the "you're a great guy" nor did I like hearing from a new person how "amazing" I was.  I would say or write depending:  "Thanks so much for meeting up to [activity].  I'll have to decline your offer to get together again because I don't think we have enough in common for it to make sense to see each other again.  I wish you the best -take care!"

Related example. Last week I met a woman at my son's new school in person for the first time.  In fact she sought me out to meet me.  We'd messaged via FB while I was trying to decide on applying to the school and she, a teacher there, was so nice and helpful.  She is not a teacher in my son's grade and will have no teacher like interaction with him or any most likely.  I felt like we clicked friendship wise so I messaged her to offer to meet her for coffee after school one day.  She replied very graciously, said that she tries to leave school ASAP to avoid the traffic and commute to her home and said we'd probably see each other around on campus. 

There is my answer.  She is not that interested in getting to know me.  If she were she'd have at least offered a way to meet that was not after school or asked if I am ever available to come to her neighborhood (which is not that far -she could have at least suggested it).  I didn't need it spelled out for me that she's not that interested in getting to know me as a friend. 

I feel fine about it and also would never pursue it -so I replied "Thanks, my [son] had a good first week and I totally understand!"  

Now maybe she meant that she could never meet at the times I suggested but my point is -I default to "if they were really interested they would make an alternative suggestion."  This is how  I interpreted men who either didn't call at all (then I wouldn't -no they weren't too "shy" -and I always showed interest on a first meet or date if I was) and if the response was anything other than enthusiastically trying to make a specific plan for another date then we were done. Waste of time to pursue or feel out whether they really meant they weren't interested or were really too "busy". 

This is why I think it's ok to write what I suggested - typical people will get the hint.  

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You are asking:  Should I ghost them or let them know I am not interested.

If you ghost them it leaves it hanging in the air way to long for you and them and if you happen to run into them or date one of their friends it will be awkward.

  I text them this:  "It was nice meeting you and chatting but I didn't feel the sparks I was hoping to. Best of luck on meeting the person that is right for you"

Or words to that effect.

Be kind but put a pin in it so there is no wondering or hoping you will change your mind.

Lost

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No one wants to feel rejected.  Having said that, honesty is the best policy up to a point.  You do not need to explain.  Simply say or text:  "Thank you for meeting me recently and thank you for asking to meet again.  I really appreciated it.  However,  no thank you.  I wish you all the best.  Take care.  Sincerely,  Your Name."   No means no in a kind way. 

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Being straightforward and honest is the kindest thing you can do. “Thank you for meeting with me, but I don’t feel as though we’re a match. I wish you luck in finding your special someone.” That’s the end of it. 

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19 minutes ago, jul-els said:

Being straightforward and honest is the kindest thing you can do. “Thank you for meeting with me, but I don’t feel as though we’re a match. I wish you luck in finding your special someone.” That’s the end of it. 

I think this one is PERFECT.

I always think it's better to phrase it as "I don't think we're a match", because it focuses on you two not being compatible.

Saying things like "I didn't feel any sparks" or "I didn't feel any chemistry" makes me cringe, because I feel like it's on par with saying "Sorry, I wasn't physically attracted to you!". There's no need to get that specific about it.

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It's never easy, but you'll get better at it with practice.  Look at it this way.  Wouldn't you rather have someone tell you in respectful way rather than giving you mixed messages, fading or not responding at all?   

It's never fun to be told 'I'm not into you that way"  But it is a part of dating.

Good for you. . .carry on!

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Meeting for coffee for the first time is meeting for coffee...that isn't a date.  You owe each other nothing.  And if he didn't ask you a direct question, no need to give him a whole song and dance.  You aren't friends, coworkers, just people who met for coffee.  You just don't text again.  If he does asks you on a date, then you can say, "thanks, but I don't think we're a right match." 

But don't stress.  This is someone you've only spent 2 hours with.  If they are that devastated by you saying no thanks, RED FLAGS.

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7 minutes ago, tattoobunnie said:

Meeting for coffee for the first time is meeting for coffee...that isn't a date.  You owe each other nothing.  And if he didn't ask you a direct question, no need to give him a whole song and dance.  You aren't friends, coworkers, just people who met for coffee.  You just don't text again.  If he does asks you on a date, then you can say, "thanks, but I don't think we're a right match." 

But don't stress.  This is someone you've only spent 2 hours with.  If they are that devastated by you saying no thanks, RED FLAGS.

Oh yes -of course there's no reason to contact to say if you're thinking of asking me on a real first date the answer will be no.  Silence is the answer. I always preferred silence to some self serving "you're so amazing but we're not a match"

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18 hours ago, reinventmyself said:

It's never easy, but you'll get better at it with practice.  Look at it this way.  Wouldn't you rather have someone tell you in respectful way rather than giving you mixed messages, fading or not responding at all?   

It's never fun to be told 'I'm not into you that way"  But it is a part of dating.

Good for you. . .carry on!

Thank you, your advice is on point ...Of course, honesty is better than mixed messages 

I am trying to adopt this mindset 🙂 

17 hours ago, Batya33 said:

Oh yes -of course there's no reason to contact to say if you're thinking of asking me on a real first date the answer will be no.  Silence is the answer. I always preferred silence to some self serving "you're so amazing but we're not a match"

I understand your point of view, but this guy was really sweet and shy. I think his "I look forward to meeting you" was his way of saying "it went great, when are we doing this again ?"  

So I felt it was better to be honest with him and not to leave him hanging 

17 hours ago, tattoobunnie said:

Meeting for coffee for the first time is meeting for coffee...that isn't a date.  You owe each other nothing.  And if he didn't ask you a direct question, no need to give him a whole song and dance.  You aren't friends, coworkers, just people who met for coffee.  You just don't text again.  If he does asks you on a date, then you can say, "thanks, but I don't think we're a right match." 

But don't stress.  This is someone you've only spent 2 hours with.  If they are that devastated by you saying no thanks, RED FLAGS.

Yes, definitely 

In the other hand, he seemed to lack some self-esteem. He implied his father was very critical and dismissive, always putting him down and doubting his abilities (awful, I know ...😔)

So, I really hope my rejection won't add to his trouble 

But like my friend say, I can't date someone because I pity/empathize with them. It would be insulting for them 

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1 hour ago, Shycarrot said:

understand your point of view, but this guy was really sweet and shy. I think his "I look forward to meeting you" was his way of saying "it went great, when are we doing this again ?"  

So I felt it was better to be honest with him and not to leave him hanging 

With a near stranger I'd assume nothing -if the person asks you out for a date time and place you can decline.  Otherwise he's a grown up.  So are you. If a person says he looks forward to meeting you again it's fine to say if you don't want to leave the person hanging something like "thanks for letting me know! right now I'm really busy and have a lot going on so how about we leave it that I'll let you know if things open up. I wish you well!"  That way you save his feelings -and he gets the hint. 

I've always gotten the hint with don't call me I'll call you.  Haven't you? 

I'm not about "honesty" in that sense because you didn't tell him let's say that you were repulsed by his mannerisms or he was not cute enough etc - I am for being polite and very brief and not gushing about how wonderful the person is which is why I suggested what I did. 

Dating requires a thick skin.  Would you want a person to be "honest" meaning sharing whatever was in his head as to why he didn't want to see you again if it had to do with your physical features -flaws in them let's say? Or that he didn't feel like holding your hand or how you should wear lipstick or more makeup (yes, the latter was said to me once, many years ago -how honest of him).  Shy people also have to develop a thick skin very often and very often it is worth it to them because they are looking for a lasting, serious relationship. It was worth it to my -then very shy- future husband.  

Many years ago I met a guy at a post-religious event coffee thing.  We chatted for about a half hour.  We walked out of the place together for one block as we were going in the same direction.  I mentioned my boyfriend while we were chatting.  I did not flirt with him at all.

He then found my landline phone number and called me(I did not give him my number) left me a voice mail to say that he was going to be there on a certain date -I think speaking at the service maybe? - and he'd love to see me again.  It was very clear he was interested in dating me. 

It wasn't clear if he'd heard me say I had a boyfriend. I did not return his call or attend the event.  I guess I left him hanging.  I had no issue leaving him hanging because I never felt I was left hanging when I expressed interest/asked someone out and got silence in return. Silence meant lack of interest.  I didn't choose to call him and be honest that I had a boyfriend and was not interested.  I felt comfortable with my choice.  I preferred hearing nothing from someone who Id told on a first date or first meet or second date that I'd love to see the person again and/or expressed obvious interest in another date etc.

I think your intentions are honorable and I'd be careful about trying to play therapist or mom when it comes to declining to see someone again.

 

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20 hours ago, Shycarrot said:

 I replied something along the line "thank you, I really appreciate you but I dont think we're a good match. I wish you luck in your further research" 

Good job. Short sweet neat and clean.

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