Everyone of us experiences a certain degree of rejection in life. Spend any amount of time on the dating scene and you’ll quickly learn that not everyone can be a match. Sometimes you may meet individuals who are lacking in character or other qualities that are essential to you in order for a relationship to develop. At other times, you may meet a person who measures up perfectly against your “list” for a mate, but for whatever the reason, that necessary spark just isn’t there.
Regardless of the reasons, when you find yourself in a scenario where you just can’t return those loving feelings, it can be an award position to be in. When you’ve come to this conclusion, one of the most humane things that can be done is to be totally honest and to establish boundaries.
Make a mental plan to have a brief conversation, explaining gingerly that you feel the two of you have different hopes and expectations regarding your relationship. While it may seem cold, it’s best to not allow yourself to engage in the “what if’s” and “why’s” that may be asked of you. To do so doesn’t bring about any real closure for the other person and only serves to perpetuate a cycle of rejection and hurt. It’s best to simply repeat your stance and to end the conversation quickly.
Establishing boundaries is also a very important step in this process. If you had a valued friendship that you feel is worth preserving, it can be possible to have a platonic relationship again in the future. However, it is usually advisable to allow some time to disconnect and let romantic feelings cool first. Be prepared to tell them that you would like to wait for a couple months before talking again, or whatever time frame you feel comfortable with.
Often a person who believes that there is hope to win someone over will grasp for any amount of contact they can continue. This “holding on” can cause further hurt and it rarely results in a happy ending or a true continued friendship free of complications.
So, while there isn’t a magical cure to totally alleviate the discomfort surrounding a rejection, treating someone with courtesy and honesty is always the best thing for them. And since you can’t always preserve a person’s feelings, handling rejection with sensitivity can go a long way toward preserving their dignity.