Posts Tagged ‘single life’

A Surprise Contemplation: Revolutionary ImproVerse Haiku Lament

November 30, 2016

When a guy who you/
admire gets dumped, you wonder/
what chances you have.*
if you stand a chance.

Lonely In Bed: Revolutionary IMprov Haiku

November 9, 2014

When we hate going/
to bed, it’s often just a/
sign of loneliness.

Just Say No! How To Turn Down A Date — Article

January 14, 2014

This was an article I wrote and published in early 2014 in Since it no longer exists (and since the issues still exist!), I’m republishing it here. It remains under my (c) Copyright, but may be reprinted with permission and reference.
Just Say No! Why And How To Say No – And How To Respond – In Dating

In the 80’s, First Lady Nancy Reagan’s anti-drug campaign had the slogan: “Just Say NO!” Great advice for both women and men in on-line and in-person dating, it seems to be a lost art.

Based on personal experience and discussions with hundreds of women and men, this article explores:

• Why we don’t say no (and what we do instead)
• Why say no at all (and why not NOT say no)
• How to say no
• What no means (and doesn’t mean)
• What no enables us to do
• How to accept no

Why We Don’t Say No (And What We Do Instead)

If you’ve been involved in post-divorce dating at all, you’ve probably experienced this: You find someone attractive and interesting. You approach them on-line with a well-thought-out, mildly funny and interesting “first e-mail”. You wait for a response. And wait. And wait.
Maybe you send another email. And wait …
Maddening, isn’t it?
It seems the preferred response method is to say … nothing.

Why do we do that? My own experience is that I think I don’t know how to say no well. Sometimes, I just can’t think of a good reason.

The most common response is simply: “I don’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings. If I don’t say anything, they’ll know I’m not interested, but I won’t hurt them.”

Why Say No At All (And Why Not NOT Say No)

If we truly want to be kind, and really believe in karma, we’ll do others the courtesy and the favor of saying no.

Let that sink in.

Rather than hurting people by saying no, we’re actually doing them a favor!

Here’s why: Most adults in the post-divorce dating world EXPERIENCE REJECTION. We’re divorced! We’ve been rejected! If we’ve dated, we have had our share of turn downs. We can take it. Though it might sting for a while, we’ll be okay and move on.

In contrast, receiving no answer (i.e., silence) is painful. It makes us wonder several things, none of which are accurate:

• Did my message not go through?
• Did I say something wrong / stupid / silly?
• Am I not attractive / worthy enough?
• What’s wrong with me that they won’t at least respond?
• Is s/he saying “no” now, but leaving the door open for later?

In my experience (and those of others I’ve talked with), if you don’t say no, 80% of the time (or more) you’ll get repeated requests. Do you really want that? Saying no is actually less painful for all involved!

How To Say No

Now that we understand why saying no can be a good, healthy thing for all involved, here is, in my mind, a great way to say no, (and why it’s so good).

“Thank you for contacting me.” (acknowledges my efforts). “In looking over your profile” (indicates the person at least made some effort), “I can really see you have a [some positive statement here].” (it makes me feel good about who I am, and softens what comes next). “However, I don’t feel that we are a good match.” (I can’t deny a person’s feelings. This is a definitive NO statement. If you want to be even clearer, add on: “So, thank you, but no.) “You seem like a great person” (again, making me feel good about who I am) “and I wish us both success in finding the one right for us!” (Makes me remember that I’m not trying to please everyone, I just want to please one who’s right for me).

Other variations include: “I received your email. Thank you, but no.”
“I don’t think we’re a good match, so no thank you.”
“I don’t think we’re a good match, for these reasons: [reasons are listed].” (I personally dislike this answer, because the person receiving it will often argue and try to prove the sender wrong. It’s easier to say no without a reason except “a feeling”).
“I just met someone.” (if it’s true).

What No Means (And Doesn’t Mean)

Here’s something you must learn and internalize. It took me years to understand:
No means No.

It doesn’t mean:

• You’re ugly/weird/stupid
• You’re not worthy of me
• I don’t like you
• Nobody will like you
• You’re not in my league
• Ewwww, cooties!

It simply means no. Deal with it. Move on.

What No Enables Us To Do

You’ve received a “No.” You hurt a little. Although we may not like getting rejected, No is actually a very empowering word. Why?

It lets us move on.

Silence makes us wonder. Giving reasons “why not” leads to arguing. No lets us say: “Okay, next!”

An old sales adage says: “Every no brings us closer to yes.” As much as we hate to admit it, dating today is a numbers game. The more people we contact, the more rejection we may get, BUT the more likely we are to get the final “YES!” we are looking for.

How To Accept No

A common complaint I hear, especially from women, is: “I don’t want to say no. When I do, the guy will argue with me, or come back and say hurtful, insulting things. So I say nothing.”

First off: Men! Seriously? You think you’ll change her mind with insults? In fact, because the dating community is so small, you’ll probably nuke any chances of ANYONE saying “Yes.”

The polite response is to acknowledge their no, and give them encouragement in return. “Thank you for at least responding. I wish us both good luck in our search.” is an indication of good manners … and creates good karma!

What’s Next In No-Man’s/No-Woman’s Land?

Now you know the reasons to say no, AND you have examples, don’t be afraid to use them. When you get a “No”, simply say “Thank you.” and move on. It’s not personal, AND you’ve just gotten that much closer to the person you really want in your life, because they want you in theirs.

Dave Kuhns is a web content writer and communications / marketing consultant. Single for seven years, his advice is based on (sometimes painful) first-hand experience, mistakes he’s made, and discussions he’s had with hundreds of divorced, dating singles.