Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Help! An FnF reader needs dating advice. What's the best way to tell a guy you're not interested?

Ok, so I don't know if my friend Ashley actually reads my blog, haha, but when she told me about her dating dilemma, I just had to post it. So many girls have this problem—how do you let a guy know you're not interested? One time a guy called me every day for a week and I never once picked up or returned his call, and he finally got the hint. I don't suggest doing that though—it was a very awkward and painful to witness his desperation increase as the days went on. (I mean, not that I could blame him). Anyway,  here's her story...

I geared up for my first Halloween in New York and put on my H1N1 costume and headed to a party with some of my new friends. After an hour or so of an open bar (social lubrication was really needed!), I started chatting with a guy who, after another several hours or so of said open bar, I kissed. Since he was a pretty good kisser and wasn’t an embarrassing dancer, I gave him my number at the end of the night. He said he would call soon and we said goodnight. 

After a short phone call a week or so later and some casual texting, we agreed to meet at a bar in Brooklyn. Anyone ever been on a date where you knew right away that you weren’t interested? Well, welcome to that date. The obvious topics of conversation had been covered on Halloween and now, we were stuck. Every new topic I tried to bring up had a four-minute lifeline and I had no way out. After a slow hour and a half at bar number one we voted for a change of venue. Still no luck AND he seemed to be having a great time! How does that happen?

It gets worse. After finishing my beer (and calling my friends and roommates from the bathroom), I told him I was ready to go home, and he INSISTED on taking me back on the subway. After telling him it was fine and I didn’t need him to take me home (re: three beers over two and a half painful hours) I found myself on the subway with him. After another painful 30 minutes at my place he wouldn’t leave, so I got up and opened my door and asked if I could call him a cab. He hugged me, kissed my cheek, promised to call soon and thanked me for a great (really, great?) night. 

It is now December 22 and I have yet to go on another date with my Halloween kiss. Our only face-to-face contact since then has been a very, very awkward run-in in SoHo where he hugged me twice and asked me out twice in FIVE minutes.  Yet somehow I am STILL getting texts, facebook chats and messages from this dude. He asks about my weekends, work and how Thanksgiving in St. Louis went. He keeps asking me out (I either don’t respond or make up excuses) and telling me how pretty I am. This guy is even ruining compliments for me now! But somehow, he still can’t get the hint!

So, faithful followers of Ellen, any advice or help? Maybe I should just send him to this blog...

Sounds like the dude just doesn't want to accept that it was over before it even began. When a guy is this persistent, it automatically makes me think he's not getting any. Maybe he hasn't been to second base in a while—or ever—and was hoping Ashley would be that special girl. Girls and guys, what advice do you have for Ashley? Have you ever had a hard time telling a guy you just weren't interested?


  1. Well I JUST had to deal with this topic, and he was a super nice guy to boot! There was just no chemistry-nothing, zilch, nada!

    I basically told him that I was just undatable right now with everything piled on my plate. It took the pressure of him feeling like he did something wrong AND I didn't have to tell him that I wasn't into him.

    It's SO hard to be completely honest when others feelings get involved:(

    Good luck girl!


  2. I agree with Barbara's position of just telling him it aint gonna happen. Go for the subtle "Bad place" line...if that doesn't work, just say "I don't feel it. Nothing wrong with you, just no zing."
    Now don't call him to do this. But the next time he calls you, answer the phone, and explain why you haven't returned his various communications and then let him know you are not interested.
    He will be stung, but at least he won't be pinning for you much longer.


  3. Oh, I feel for you, this seems to happen more & more these days. It is fascinating how 2 people on the same date can come away to 2 completely different evenings. I think they need a book/movie called "SHE'S not that into you."

    It is hard to be honest, but I personally have been trying to do that more lately...I don't know maybe if I pay off my karma, karma will return the favor and send a good guy along.

    Do what feels right for the situation. Although I've used the I'm too busy card, I fear it is becoming as cliche as "I'm washing my hair," or "It's not you it's me." But, for some reason, no one has caught on yet. If you do decide to let him in on the "secret" that you're not into him, I agree with Shannon - wait until he calls then let him down easy. Be sincere and kind and no one can blame you for being honest.

    Confession time: I'm a total hypocrite right now as I gave my number to a guy who approached me while I was Christmas shopping last night. He called, 5 minutes later, and I can't bring myself to call back. I realized on my voice mail that it wasn't just the traffic in the background -- I can't understand a word he says (P.S. He's does not have an accent). So, I guess I'm not taking my own advice, but I may have to blame it my inability to understand him. :-)

  4. Barbara, deets please!! What did you say? How did he respond? etc etc

    Good point, Shannon—wait until he calls. I guess that way it won't seem as dramatic either.

    Alison, that is so funny. What are you going to do if he calls again? Was he cute?? And HOW did he approach you?? Calling five minutes later seems as bit much. Why is there never a happy medium. Guys either wait DAYS to call (or they don't at all) or they call five minutes later. What the heck?!

  5. Ellen~

    I told him that I was pretty much undatable right now due to many irons in the fire. This is a true statement due to my crazy project/filming sched. these days. I left out the "no zing" info...

    He was dissapointed but understood and thanked me for being upfront. Of course I felt bad for not telling him "I wasn't into him" but I really hate hurting people.

    Anyway..we shall remain friends and probably hang out at some pt.

  6. Ohh it's good that he was cool about it, Barbara. I don't think all guys would. What are you doing in film?? Sounds interesting!

  7. Thanks for the advice everyone.

    Another issue is that we have a small group of mutual friends (who have been NO help in getting my message of disinterest across). I like our mutual frineds but they are better friends with him and I don't want to spoil that. Or be THAT girl in their group. Maybe I'm just over thinking this?

  8. This guy has been on 1 date with you and had 1 kiss. His feelings are not that important at this point, he'll be alright.

    The faster you set him straight, the quicker you can stop worrying about it.

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  10. Tell him that you're hoping to be married within a year...

    That should take care of it.

    ; )

  11. My favorite advice is Ryan's by far. Perfect.

    As for the "guy on the street," he texted this evening to see if I wanted to meet up. I told him I was already gone for vacation (not quite true) and wished him a happy new year. He responded with maybe we can meet up when you get back. I didn't respond. I feel a little guilty because it is Christmas Eve-Eve.

    As for how he approached, he was on a bike at a stop light and I smiled as I walked across the street -- yes, my fault. He was then waiting outside the store I walked into when I came out. He was cute, until he spoke (or attempted to speak). The poor guy kept voicing how nervous he was and how bad at "this" he was. I admit it was cute, but I need a guy who has bit of confidence (not cocky, just comfortable in their own skin).

    Maybe smiling at cute strangers is not in my best interest. I'm not even sure why I agreed to give him my number. I just felt kind of bad for him. That is awful, I know.

  12. I like your idea about sending him to this blog!! That'll do the trick :) Maybe it'll help him in the future too!! HEHEHE

  13. Good point, Flip. I guess it's at least a good thing that some girls really do CARE about a guy's feelings though.

    I second what Kelly said...he can get the hint by reading this post and no one has to witness his beet red face as he discovers his Halloween kiss was nothing more than that...a (drunk) kiss.

    OMG, Alison—that sounds paaainful! Bless that poor guy! But do you really blame him—if I were a dude, you'd make me nervous too ;)

  14. I'm with Flip, the faster the better. You can take their feelings into account obviously, but at this point he has built Ashley up in his mind thinking about her for over a week. Its like ripping off a band-aid in that it only stings for a very short time. He WILL be fine. I do get it that a face to face let down would be much harder...I would probably wait for a phone op too.