Category Archives: Personal

What not to do when rejecting

While searching for articles on unrequited love, I came across this old NYT piece that was sympathetic to the rejecter’s side.

Despite the eventual heartbreak that is the destiny of the unrequited lover, by and large the incidents revealed that there was often more unhappiness on the part of the person pursued than on the pursuer. The unrequited lovers spoke of hope and passion before the final disillusionment; those who spurned them told of an initial flattery that soon gave way to bewilderment, guilt and anger at an intrusive, relentless pursuer.

Yep. I’m sure I’m not feeling the emotional upset that my pursuer is feeling, but I am definitely Annoyed.

I have tried to come to some conclusion about what I could have done to stop this situation from happening, and the fact of the matter is, there’s not much I could have done without having been unnecessarily cruel. For example,  in the past when he said something like, “I get flustered when I’m around you”, what should have I done? Said, “well, the feeling’s not mutual?” I’m sure I just smiled stupidly and vaguely demurred. Or, even worse, I suppose I could have tried to preempt with “I’m worried that you’re falling for me and I should let you know that I don’t feel the same” How horrible for the both of us!

If he had done something out of line I could have been upfront that I felt uncomfortable, but his M.O. was mostly to be complimentary, and I think “thank you” is typically the only appropriate response (btw for any guys reading, being complimentary without occasional gentle teasing here and there is boring. “Nice” guys never believe me when I tell them this and try to argue, so you won’t listen anyway, but at least I tried).

Anyway, at least I have finally figured out how to let men down. If they are part of my social circle, I can say, “I only think of you as a friend”. If they are not I can say, “I just don’t feel a spark”. I don’t think anything else is needed for the Rejection Arsenal.

Important stuff:

The inability to tell an undesired suitor that there is no hope is very common, Dr. Baumeister found. “The rejecter usually feels guilty and doesn’t know how to say ‘No’ without hurting the pursuer,” he said. “So the most common tactic is to lie low, continue to be nice, and wait, hoping the infatuation will fade. It’s like a conspiracy of silence, where one person doesn’t want to openly speak rejecting words and the other doesn’t want to hear it.”

That strategy, however, feeds the fantasies of romance of the would-be lover, and so inadvertently encourages pursuit. “People send mixed messages, saying to the unwanted lover something like, ‘You’re a nice person, and I’d like to be your friend, but I don’t want to get into a relationship just now,’ ” said Dr. Baumeister. “Even when telling the would-be lover the bad news, the rejecters often sugarcoat the rejection with conciliatory words.”

The would-be lover sometimes seizes on the positive side of the message, remaining hopeful. Moreover, for most people it is clearer how one goes about wooing someone than how to spurn someone gracefully.

So, if you don’t want your pursuer to try again in the future, being wishy-washy is not the way to go. Just say, “I only think of you as a friend/I don’t feel a spark”.



Filed under Personal, Relationships

What not to do when rejected

We had known each there for almost 10 years and we lived a good 5 hour trip away from each other, so meetings were rare. Still, this is the age of the internet, so contact over social media and email was not infrequent. Earlier in the year, he broke up with a girlfriend, and his attentions turn to me. Mixed CDs arrived in my mail and the occasional email declared how much he thought of me.

Even tho I had rebuffed his advances years ago, I have found that men don’t typically fear trying again later.

He chose my birthday to openly declare his affections. I received a card followed by a bouquet of flowers and a note signed “love”. Unfortunately, the feelings weren’t mutual, and I gently let him know that I only thought of him as a friend. His reply was a relief to me; he thanked me for being direct.

His mistake came the next day. Clearly distraught that I wasn’t interested in a romantic relationship, he sent me a message undoing any goodwill he had built up the previous day with his low-drama reply. Making clear to me that his emotions were out of control, he said that he could not pretend to feel different than he did and to do so would be tantamount to lying. Apparently my feelings and wishes did not come in to play! I was also alarmed to find out that he would prefer “not to face the future without me”, basically guaranteed the very thing he sought to avoid.

I replied that I did not like being put on pedestals and that he needed to examine reality, life, and my place in it. Not knowing what to do with my message, he left Facebook  and I hope to not hear from him again any time soon, especially without an apology.

Faced with rejection, going out to the bar with friends is a good idea; writing desperate emails is not. I post this hoping that it could dissuade even one person from sending a message when emotionally distraught.


Filed under Personal, Relationships

Rules debate

Hi everyone,

I have turned off the comments for the post “Rule #5 Don’t Call Him and Rarely Return His Calls“. I think a bunch of good points have been brought up, both about this particular rule and The Rules in general, and I don’t think any more hashing out needs to happen.

In fact one of the reasons I quit updating this blog was because I got tired of The Rules project, because The Rules themselves are tiresome. I mainly see them as somewhat helpful guidelines for clueless women, with much silliness thrown in.

Apparently, a new edition is coming out in a couple of months. At some point I will read it and report on it. In the meantime, I’d like to know if you get anything out of this blog and want you’d like to read on. Book reviews? Specific topics? Dating? Singleness?


Filed under Personal, The Rules


Thanks for reading datingwise! Just a quick note to let you know that I’m taking a break from blogging for a few weeks. I love writing about dating and relationships and singlehood, but right now I don’t have the energy to devote time to thinking and writing about specific topics. I may put up links to articles on occasion. See you later!



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Getting over an ex

I don’t like getting too personal on this blog, but since I write on occasion about my friends and acquaintances, I suppose it’s only fair to divulge about my personal life at times. So here’s a tale about getting over one’s ex.

About 5 months ago I broke up with someone with whom I’d had a really intense romance. 3 months into the relationship, when it became apparent that it wasn’t going to work out in the long run, I broke up with him. I was very torn up about this decision but I knew it was the right thing to do. I’ve spent this winter largely getting to a good place again. (N.B:Writing this blog helped)

Last weekend I ran into him at a bar. I was stunned to see him and while I didn’t interact him beyond nodding at him, later, one of his friends came up to me and gave me the 3rd degree. Apparently my ex had been discussing exes right before I walked in. The friend said that my ex had really liked me, why did I hate him? I did not, and told the friend so. So why did I break up with him, why did I “murder his heart”?  I gave him my reasons for breaking it off and he seemed satisfied.

Folks, if your own friends won’t defend you from charges of selfishness, it’s time to examine your life.

I spent the next few days in a funk, wondering if I had made a mistake, wondering we could make it all work out after all. A couple times I almost emailed him.

Serendipitously, a person that I’ve known online for 3 years came to town last weekend. I met up with him on Monday. Pretty quickly he became flirtatious and made a point that he wanted to see me again during his visit.

Wednesday, I was still tormented about my ex. That evening I met up with this new friend. He made it clear by the end of the evening that he was quite smitten. While I have no idea where this friendship is going, I am grateful that at the very least it has helped me to realize just how wrong for me my ex was. I won’t go into too much detail but the main difference is that I am religious; my ex was not. It is such a relief to go on a date with someone who shares your religious views (core value for me) right from the start.

It doesn’t mean my new friend is The One, but whoever The One is 1. sure wasn’t my ex and 2. I won’t have to feel like I’m hiding who I am from him.

Auntie Seraphic writes touchingly about barriers around your heart in an older blog post:

In marriage, there are not supposed to be barriers in your hearts. But I had to construct a barrier around the part called “Roman Catholic”, and it was a very big part. If we had gotten along in other ways, and loved each other, and treated each other decently, which we certainly did not do, there would still have been a barrier around the part of my heart called “Roman Catholic”. I would have had to keep it there to guard against my natural wish to please my husband, and he would have been most pleased if I had skipped Catholic Masses in favour of Anglican services and ignored Catholic doctrine about the transmission of life.

Having the same core values means being able to be fully intimate with your spouse, confident that you’re using the same foundations to build your lives together.


Filed under Dating, Marriage, Personal


You can say that I’m a traditionalist. I believe that men should pursue women and not vice versa. I believe that it is a woman’s job to determine whether a man is worthy of marriage or not. I believe that women have more to lose by marrying or becoming the sexual partner of the wrong man. This blog is a call for women to reclaim their dignity and self-respect.
I will be discussing and provide links and quotes related to dating, courtship, and the single life. Enjoy!

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Filed under Personal