Men behaving badly

by

Rory Gibson

Being rejected never does much for your confidence or self-esteem, but nevertheless it is a part of life.

Even little knock-backs can sting. A friend who recently ventured into the world of online dating was telling me how shocked she was when she sent a virtual wink to some bloke she liked the look of and he immediately blocked her. Her indignation was hilarious to behold, but it was only hilarious because it hadn’t happened to me. She wasn’t laughing.

People deal with rejection in a variety of ways. Not taking it personally is the key, but that’s easier said than done.

I’ve always admired sales staff who try to make a living out of cold calling. Being told to rack off all day must wear you down, but they just keep knocking on doors. Lots of jobseekers also know the hot hurt of another person deeming them unworthy.

But as it was for my friend, whose sense of self-worth took a hammering when an unknown man shut her down before she had a chance to say what’s cookin’ good lookin’, it is in the realm of romance that rejection can really cause havoc.

Lots of men, it seems, are behaving badly if they aren’t feeling the love, and if you want to see what I mean you must check out the Instagram account Bye Felipe. Actually, if you are at all squeamish about abusive and hateful language, you better not.

It was set up by a woman called Alexandra Tweten so that women could post screen shots of the abuse they cop from men who don’t take kindly to being told “no thanks”.

Fellas, I have to tell you, it doesn’t paint our gender in a good light.

Yes, yes, I’m sure there are women who are thoroughly repugnant in this regard too, but few would have the sense of entitlement that underpins the tirades captured on Bye Felipe.

I’ve been following the site for a while now and it is a window into some ugly souls indeed. I went back and had a look at the postings to see if I could find a couple of examples for this article, but they were all so rancid none were acceptable.

Many of the responses are illogical. Guys reach out and want a conversation/date/sex, and then when told no, they launch into an unflattering critique of their target’s looks. If you thought the girl was too fat/ugly/had too much facial hair, why did you ask her out in the first place you dork?

Then there are the boofheads who greet polite refusal with a declaration that the woman who has knocked them back is either “stuck up” or a lesbian. Yes, of course, they would be the only reasons for sure. It couldn’t possibly be the man’s crassness, inability to spell, or that his profile picture shows him sharpening a hunting knife.

Online dating sites are a wonderful resource in which people can interact and seek out a like-minded partner for relationships of every kind. But not everyone is going to respond to you positively. A lot of people are very shy, or very busy, or very different from you, and therefore may not reply immediately with enthusiasm to your “how about it?” nudge.

I suspect the majority of the Neanderthals featured on Bye Felipe are card-carrying misogynists and therefore unable to be reformed.

But if you are just a bloke looking for love, don’t get angry if you are knocked back. You don’t know what’s going on in that woman’s life and you have to accept that, as handsome and desirable as you undoubtedly are, you won’t be everyone’s cup of tea. Just be polite. Be the better man.

Here’s what Ms Tweten has to say to online Romeos: “Don’t take it personally if we aren’t interested. Realise that we get these types of mean messages, so don’t contribute to it. Don’t feel entitled to a woman just because she’s on a dating site.”

Or, as my granny used to say, if you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all.

How do you deal with rejection? Do you think we’ve lost our dating etiquette in the digital age? Let us know in the comments below or join the conversation @eHarmony_AU or on Facebook.com/eHarmonyaustralia.


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