10 Scary Reasons Why 'Letting Him Down Easy' Never Seems To Work

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how to reject men

There's no such thing as nicely rejecting him.

If you think about it, there are really only three ways to react to being rejected: you can acknowledge rejection and apologize, you can throw a tantrum, or, somehow, you’ll refuse to take no for an answer. There’s no doubt that rejection hurts, but the fact of the matter is that, even if you've never learned how to reject men, there’s a right way and a wrong way to deal with it.

One of the biggest problems in the dating scene these days is that most men can’t seem to handle polite rejection the right way.

If you go ahead and ask any girl under 30 about the worst ways they’ve seen guys react to a polite rejection, I guarantee that you’ll hear horror stories. You’ll hear about guys cursing girls out, refusing to take no for an answer, stalking them, or even getting violent with them. It’s a sh*tshow.

RELATED: 15 Things Women Are TIRED Of Hearing From The Men They Reject

The weird thing is that it’s very rare to see a girl or non-binary person react that way. (That being said, it’s not unheard of — I’ve been guilty of it myself.) Even though some guys can take a hint, they seem to be in a rapidly decreasing minority.

For some dating burnouts such as myself, seeing the repulsive ways guys react to polite rejection is part of the reason it’s so hard to respect the gender as a whole.

It used to be that a gentle rejection was the way to go. Now, being very clear about your disinterest and ceasing all contact after that seems like the only way to extricate yourself. Being gentle about letting a guy down just isn’t safe anymore; it opens you up to a lot of ugly behavior.

Ever wonder why letting a guy down gently doesn’t ever seem to work, or why ghosting guys has become so common around girls? Well, here’s the truth behind the trouble.

1. Men are socialized to be persistent.

Society praises a persistent man. Think about most rom-com plots in blunt honesty for a moment, okay? Most of the time, guys get the girl by relentlessly pursuing them, even though the girls in the films often tell them that they are not interested.

The message these movies send is that a guy’s persistent pursuit will override the girl’s disinterest, when in reality, it won’t.

2. In many situations, guys don’t really understand that no means no.

It’s sad but it’s true. A lot of remnants of toxic dating culture from yesteryear gave guys the idea that “no” means “maybe.” This is why even firm no’s don’t seem to deter some guys.

They might not be taking you seriously — or worse, they’re so delusional that they have decided to make up your mind for you.

3. With cases where guys relentlessly harass girls, it’s very possible that mental illness may be at play.

You might have heard of guys who do anything possible to harass a girl, including threatening them after a polite rejection happens. This is something that most people don’t realize until they’re actually in that situation. With a lot of mentally ill stalker types, any reaction — even a negative one — is a reaction where they feel it’s a win.

The reason why is because you’re still talking to them, which, in their minds, means there’s still a chance. That’s why they often will escalate to threats and insults; they think it’s a way to elicit some kind of reaction and control over you.

4. Our society is increasingly averse to failure and mistakes.

It used to be that failing was basically an expected rite of passage. It was meant to give you character. The problem is that a lot of parents no longer seem to be comfortable with letting their kids fail at anything. Any time that their kids fail, their helicopter parents will swoop in to make sure they are “unfailed” by any means necessary.

It seems like something that wouldn’t be that bad, but it’s actually horrible. Being unable to handle or tolerate failure gives people terrible anxiety and wrecks careers, too.

The funny thing is, this messes guys and girls up when they’re trying to date later on. They see rejection as failure... and they’ve never experienced this before. So, they freak out.

RELATED: Why Women Sexually Reject Men

5. Another thing that adds to the way guys overreact to rejection is gaming culture.

Video games are everywhere — and honestly, they’re fun. However, there’s an issue with gaming that most people forget: they are based on mathematical formulas. Gamers know that if you do A and B, you’ll get X and Z in return.

As anyone with an iota of social awareness can tell you, this isn’t the way people work. You can’t put in niceness tokens and get sex in return. Unfortunately, you can’t explain this to most guys who think this way, because most of them already made up their mind that they feel cheated, not realizing that they were never really promised a formulaic outcome in the first place.

6. To make matters worse, we all are tacitly taught that life is a meritocracy.

This is true for both men and women. We’re told that the rich folks worked hard for their money, and therefore deserve wealth. We’re told that the famous worked hard for their contract, and that if we work hard enough, we can make it too.

It sounds great, but it’s not realistic. Not everyone who deserves a good life gets one — and that’s also true in dating and relationships.

Because we’re subtly fed the idea that being of merit is what gets you laid, this makes a polite rejection much harsher to cope with. This is why a lot of people who get a polite rejection end up asking for an explanation; they feel they did everything right and therefore deserve a date. This, in turn, explains why a lot of people will argue the validity of a rejection.

7. We live in a society that regularly tells people that they “deserve the best” and “will eventually get theirs.”

If this was true, there would be no homeless people. These kinds of lessons only make people act like entitled, whiny prats when they don’t get their way, which is precisely what happens when guys end up being unable to handle a rejection like a grown man.

8. It’s also getting increasingly common for people to lack social skills and self-awareness.

Blame social media, or just blame bad parenting, but whatever it is, there are a lot of emotionally stunted people out there. Men, more than women, seem to bear the brunt of this trend in society, possibly because of the way that each gender is traditionally raised.

In other words, a lot of guys no longer have the emotional maturity to handle a normal conversation or a polite rejection, and this makes women realize that in order to learn how to reject men, it's not enough, because giving a guy a nice rejection is relatively risky compared to how it was 10 years ago.

9. There’s also the very human, very natural desire to hope that a polite rejection may still leave the door open.

This is a more innocuous reason why skirting around rejection doesn’t seem to work with guys, or why polite rejections tend to be ignored. Truth be told, a lot of guys secretly hope that “no” means “not now, but if things improve, maybe?”

10. Lastly, there’s a lot of bad dating advice geared toward men that encourages this behavior.

I wish I was joking, but I’m not. Thanks to the glory of sketchy internet forums, dating advice that men get is not exactly conducive to a healthy relationship. It sucks, doesn’t it?

RELATED: How 'The Mary Sue Rejection Hotline' Handles Women's Texts From Creepy Guys

Ossiana Tepfenhart is a Jack-of-all-trades writer based out of Red Bank, New Jersey. When she's not writing, she's drinking red wine and chilling with some cool cats. You can follow her @bluntandwitty on Twitter.