Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Turning down a potential date: the do's and don'ts?

photo via
Every Tuesday I'm bringing you a dating or relationship-related myth,  story or article and I'll weigh in on the issue then turn the table to you guys. You can reply in the comments or on your own blog - but I want to hear your stories and what you think about the subject! Make sure you check back here on Tuesdays for more about love!
Every once in a while I blog about myths in the dating and relationship world, but sometimes everything isn't so black and white. Sometimes, you just can't avoid an awkward situation, and there's no guide book on how to make sure everything turns out alright. Sometimes, you just have to make it up as you go along.

That's how I am when I am asked out.

Now, I'm not saying it happens often, but when it does, I panic. Even being asked for my phone number puts my head into a spin. Uhh what? You want to talk to me? Oh, okay. I'll give you my number, and be totally naive as to why you actually wanted it. Then I realize when you text me later that you're interested in me. And I start to feel silly.

When you actually ask me to hang out? More likely than not, I'll say no. It's not that I'm not interested, it's just that I clam up. I become insanely awkward. And worst of all, I'm very rarely interested in someone who is interested in me. I enjoy the chase more than anything, and well, I guess I'm one of those people that only becomes interested in people who don't even realize I exist. Maybe I'm just a masochist.

But anyway...

photo via
When it comes to a potential date, there are so many options. But what if you know that you need to turn someone down? Maybe you know you have no interest and that you never will. Maybe you've got your eye on someone else. There are a million reasons as to why you want to turn them down, but it doesn't mean you need to start listing them all.

I picked up my sister's copy of Seventeen magazine and as I flipped through, there it was in black and white: "tell him that you're already seeing someone." Apparently, it's easier to let them down by lying to them and saying you're seeing someone when you're not than to just admit you don't feel like it. Apparently it hurts less and they can make themselves feel better by blaming it on bad timing.

However, I've always been one for honesty. If they are interested in you, they are interested in you. So if you would normally blab an opinion, blab your opinion. If you would normally be polite and say thanks but no thanks, take that road. There's no textbook way to turn down a potential date, because it all depends on the person and situation. Even if an awkward situation arises, you should never compromise who you are, because it won't make things any easier if you do. If anything at all, be gentle; we've all been turned down at some point so we know how it feels.

As for my situation? I was polite and blamed it on bad timing, but it wasn't a lie. But I did admit that it would be nice to have a new friend.

What do you do when you're in an awkward situation and want to turn someone down? What have you found to be the best solution, and are there unwritten do's and don'ts when it comes to turning someone down?


Stephanie said...

This happened to me a couple times and it was SO awkward. Mostly because he was a good friend, and I didn't want to hurt his feelings.

Beware: I married him later. : )

Krysten @ Why Girls Are Weird said...

Haha, the only time I've been asked out and said no was because I actually WAS seeing someone!

bethm1687 said...

Oh my gosh. You just explained my life in a nutshell. I was just approached by a guy the other day and felt weird when he actually texted and asked to hang. Being pursued? I gotta get used to it. I'm usually the one pursuing the idiots.

Ashton King said...

My second year of college I had this guy friend who wanted to be more than friends. Well, I wasn't attracted to him at all and tried to let him down gently, but he didn't take it very well. He actually ended up going out and getting drunk with several of our mutual friends and trashed me to them. He then took his rant online.

When I got over it (I was pretty furious when I saw it) and forgave him, he apparently thought that was his invitation to start pursuing me again and would follow me places or just show up unannounced and send me unwanted gifts.

He finally moved away, for which I am grateful.

He was definitely my worst experience with turning someone down.


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