You Guys: Say Yes To No
Men's Health South Africa|August 2020
You Guys: Say Yes To No
Everyone gets rejected, but some guys are better at dealing with it than others. Lauren larson explains what to say when she’s just not that into you.
Lauren Larson

Crocodiles often swallow rocks, which can then tumble around harmlessly in their stomachs for years. A bellyful of rocks may even help crocodiles control their buoyancy and digest prey. (There’s a point to this, I promise.)

There live among us people who take romantic rejection very well: I call them super-rejects. Like the rocks in the belly of the crocodile, rejections can pile up inside these super-rejects without causing any damage, until they are passed into the riverbed, unnoticed.

When you turn down one of these super-rejects, they do not send you a multi-text dirge. They do not spiral or throw themselves into the stiff, unrewarding embrace of whatever rom-com is playing on M-Net. They experience a healthy moment of woe, and they move on.

The chillness of the super-reject often awes me, and then instantly unsettles me: Did he want me to break it off?

But there have been a few times when I’ve turned down a guy after a few dates, or even after a slurred pickup attempt in a bar, and he’s gone off. The opposite of the super-reject is a guy I barely know who just can’t let it go.

That can be really scary. Like many women, I think about the day in 2014 when a young man killed six people and injured 14 more near the UC Santa Barbara campus to “punish” women for not being attracted to him. I think about a man I read about in November who used an app he’d installed in his ex-girlfriend’s car to stalk her – the app also allowed him to control the car’s stop-and-start function.

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August 2020