Tuesday, November 13, 2012

How to Reject a Guy at a Bar - Part 2

[Continued from How to Reject a Guy at a Bar - Part 1]

The worst rejections men endure are the ones that are surrounded by rudeness. Men know that not all women will like them; this is expected. If it weren't, approaching girls would be easy. It is only because we know there is the possibility of rejection that most men get nervous and find approaching girls difficult. Being rejected rudely adds insult to injury. So if you are worried about rejecting a guy but preserving his ego, your two goals should be politeness and sincerity.

Most men know long before you say it explicitly that you are rejecting them. We may not be as intuitive as women, but we know attraction when we see it, and we recognize its absence with equal certainty. Your lack of enthusiasm in responding, the inattention of your eyes, your closed body language - all of these things convey the subconscious (and sometimes conscious) message that you don't particularly want to be interacting with us.

So in most cases, men know what's about to happen. What matters is that you show him that you don't think he is worthless just because you don't want to spend your night talking to him. Giving this impression depends on the tone of your voice, your body language and your facial expressions; but it will primarily be conveyed through your smile and your eyes:

  • Smile - If a smile doesn't come naturally, try to remember the fact that a man with enough balls to approach you essentially just told you that he thought you were beautiful (even if he just wanted sex, he still thinks this). Let this thought simmer in your mind for a moment before making your move to leave him. It should be enough fuel for a smile of gratitude, if nothing else.
  • Eyes - With your eyes, do not try to look apologetic or sad. This would be insincere. Instead, make sure to make eye contact with him. You shouldn't hold his eye contact in a lingering way, which would signal your desire to talk to him again; but neither should you let it be fleeting. Look him in the eye when you tell him that you are leaving. This is a sign of respect, which is something you should have for any well-intentioned man who makes an effort to meet you. Again, remember that he overcame his nerves, or at least was a confident enough person not to have them, and you will feel respect for him; then the eye contact will come naturally.

It is important to note that you do not need an interruption from a friend in order to make an exit. When girls "cockblock" for their friends it is crass and rude (if your friend does this against your will, you should still be able to smile and make eye contact as she drags you away). You don't need this. Instead, you can simply take the next natural lull in a conversation and say "Well, I am going to go find/talk to/dance with my friends. It was nice talking with you. Have a good night." Then walk away.

Do not say "I need to..." Instead say "I am going to..." By telling him what you are going to do, you remove any hint of an excuse from your language: you are telling him what you've decided, not blaming it on something else. Again, this is part of being sincere. It is a little more abrupt, but if it is said politely, with eye contact and a smile, it is better than lying to him about why you "can't" talk to him anymore. It will also save you from his wishful thinking that you would have stayed if you could have - which might result in him showing up again later.

If you struggle with the "walk away" part, it is probably because you don't have the appropriate momentum for your exit. It might seem harsh to walk off suddenly after standing there for a while talking to him. This is easily overcome. As you sense that you want to leave, start to collect your things, or get your money out to pay for your drink, or get down or up from your seat, etc. Do these things without stopping the conversation. He will see this and therefore be primed for your exit, which in turn will make it less awkward for you. It will also help you commit to leaving so that you don't falter and give in if he tries to convince you to stay.

As for men who are extremely rude or inappropriate in their approach, or guys that grope you: just walk away. You owe them nothing, least of all respect.

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  1. Nice post. I just compiled my Top 10 Posts for Single Women - http://3rdmilleniummen.wordpress.com/top-10-posts-for-women/

    Am sure I could get an increasing amount of material from your blog, you write well and cover a lot of good information. Stay in touch!

  2. "As for men who are rude...in their approach... I suggest pointing him out to a bouncer and telling him how you were treated."

    Interesting post, but why spoil it with this very odd suggestion? Every man knows that "rude", to a woman in a bar, can be any sort of behaviour that doesn't please her. Calling a man rude is very often a woman's retaliation to a rebuke against her own rudeness, which is typically very much higher on the rudeness scale (depending on her own perceived value), her own bitchiness, or to an inconvenient truth that was told to her that she wasn't prepared for. In my experience, what a woman in a bar calls rude is often independent of the rightness of the mans behaviour in the situation. To suggest that this is "inappropriate" or something deserving of a report to the bouncer, is to seed the idea among your readers that bouncers are there to protect women from the consequences of their own bad behaviour. I'm pretty sure this is not the message you want going out into the world. Is it?

    1. I've witnessed about 3 incidents of guys getting thrown out of bars for harassing me- once physically, twice verbally. And I wasn't rude in any case. Bouncers can be great in those situations, although I sympathize with the fact that bitchy/threatening women probably don't get thrown out of bars at anywhere near the same rate.

    2. Jacob,

      It's funny because while I was drafting that post, the last sentence ended "...and telling him how you were treated (without exaggeration)." because I am very aware of how often the kinds of complaints are complete bullshit. Even this past weekend I saw a woman complaining to a bouncer at a bar about a guy who did nothing to merit getting kicked out, and like you say, she was obviously the one being rude.

      I didn't leave those words in because I figured the girls who were interested in preserving a guy's ego (i.e. the ones who would read the whole two posts) were not the kind who would make unfounded complaints to a bouncer.

    3. On second thought, I removed the whole last sentence. Solves that problem.

    4. I have difficulties believing it is a major 'risk' for guys to get thrown out without actually having done anything wrong.
      I have never complained to a bouncer, nor have any of my friends. I get approached a lot in bars, at worst a guy can be clingy or sleazy, but never so bad that I need help, I can simply walk away.
      I think you can avoid this by 1) not going to bars filled with trashy people, 2) don't approach women who seem to already have had a bit too much to drink, and 3) obviously - be polite in your approach.
      If you want to be 100% certain, try to get eye contact and smile, and approach a girl who's smiled back. There is no way a sweet, sober, girl who's smiled at you will get the bouncer if you're gentle in your approach. Could be that once in a lifetime you will experience an unfounded complaint, but I'm very skeptical towards guys who talk about getting thrown out as if it is a common problem.

    5. This is what happens:

      Guy approaches girl.
      Girl is extremely rude.
      Guy feels insulted and makes a comment.
      Girl feels threatened, even though guy does nothing.
      She tells bouncer and exaggerates because she is in a heightened emotional state (or because she is just a bitch).
      Guy gets kicked out.

      I am not saying either party is in the right, but this is how it happens.

    6. I have actually seen a friend get smacked multiple times in a club for having rejected someone rudely a few years ago. He just cornered her on a club sofa, pushed her down and started to hit her. I tried to pull him off of her but I ended getting hurt also. We reported him immediately after the incident to bouncers but they did nothing. This is what girls have to be wary of..it literally does not hurt to be polite yet make a swift exit. A lot of men do not take rejection well especially coupled with rudeness or having been led on for a bit.

    7. Wait! The three times a guy harassed me and consequently got kicked out of the bar, I didn't say ONE word to him- other than "stop," maybe.

    8. @ShortBlonde & Anonymous

      Just because you've experienced a frightening thing or two with men in bars doesn't automatically make it so in every situation for all people in every bar, for all time. The comment I was making was objective and steeped in principle - it wasn't all about you and your experience.

      Your comments typify the solipsistic attitude that almost all women have - believing their experience of men is automatically true for every other woman. Women are ruthless in their self-protectionism. Justice be damned. Fairness be damned. Equality be damned. Save me, for I am a woman. This sort of hive mentality is the far more common reason that bouncers are called.

    9. Just because this is your experience with women and perhaps a few of your mates', doesn't automatically make it so in every situation for all people in every bar, for all time.

      There are a lot of angry and bitter men on the internet and it is impossible and unreasonable for women who don't recognize anything they're saying, to try and relate to it, or apologize on behalf of womanhood. I have never seen any evidence that there are more bitchy women in any given bar than there are assholes or sleazy men.

    10. Jacob, it wasn't so much self-projectionism as it was providing eyewitness, firsthand experience to the contrary: that the woman (me) did not say anything to the man, yet the man said or did something offensive to the woman and consequently got kicked out of the bar. There was no "save me" call involved, the bouncer witnessed the harassment in each case and responded.

      My simple, non-overarching point? Men can get kicked out of bars for harassing a woman without rudeness or bitchiness on the woman's part.

    11. yea i see it all the time in clubs as well.
      for a woman to get bitchy sometimes, it only takes as much as her being on the wrong phase of the moon. if such is the case, fucking stay at home, girls. me and other men do not expect cuntish behavior.

      yes there are lines on general decency and only a minority of men, or should i say, assholes, chooses to ignore that. still, there is a difference between being an inconvenience / minor irritation to you, and gross misconduct. learn these things apart, the world isn't so that everything and everybody should be subject to your immature whims.

    12. I don’t think so. More like:

      Guy hits on uninterested girl.
      Girl reacts “rudely”.
      Guy feels insulted and “retaliates” extremely rudely.
      Girl feels threatened, and enlists bouncer for help.
      Guy gets kicked out and tells all his friends and exaggerates because he is in a delusional mental state (or because he is just a jerk).

  3. You misspelled "owe" in the last sentence.
    Great post, thanks for writing it.

  4. It's always nice to reject someone nicely rather than curtly, but there is something quietly ominous about *needing* to. I don't think it's healthy for men to exactly crumble on the spot after being rejected. As noted in the article there are usually clear indicators circling the airport that don't need to be re-discovered by actually landing at it. The spirit of civility is great, but if a guy doesn't get the long-distant hints he's not exactly being polite himself in the first place.

  5. Can you say something about rejection outside of the bar scene?
    Rejecting in a bar is quite simple (one is obviously free to over analyze the details) - in the end, you just don't give your number to someone you're not interested in.
    It gets a bit more complicated with guys that are "friends", or someone you study with. It happens to me quite a bit that I exchange numbers with a guy because we're doing a group project together (so it's necessary) or that someone from college adds me on facebook. They start texting, or writing to me on facebook or through whatsapp. The conversation is at first school-related and after a while they start asking what I'm up to and random stuff. The only way to clearly state that I am not interested is to not respond at all, but it feels rude. You can't really reject an invitation before they've made an actual invitation either (which is the hellish part of guys beating around the bush before asking you out).
    What do you think is the best way of handling this?

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