Wednesday, 9 December 2009

Handling Rejection

Pretty much anyone who has been spouse hunting has either rejected someone or has faced rejection themselves. I'm no different. But everyone seems to have their own way of dealing with rejection. For me, sure it feels bad at first but then you move on. But I also feel sad when I have to reject someone. I always try to be nice when doing it but sometimes that itself backfires.

Overall, I think I've come across 3 different reactions to the guys I've rejected.
1. The mature guys - mashaAllah, I feel the worst rejecting them because you know a person is decent if you reject them and they politely wish you luck in your search. Makes me think I should reject every guy I like (by which I mean I think he's a good Muslim) at least once just to see their reaction. ;) Oops, secret's out, can't try that.
2. The guys who don't understand "no" - no matter how polite you are or how direct you are or even if you write an essay about why you rejected them they don't get the picture. They persist. I guess they might be filmy or truly believe that persistence is the key to success. It's worse when they start to stalk you online. Add you to their facebook or keep sending you "islamic" forwards on your email. The kind that tell you to pass it to all your friends or Allah (swt) will be very displeased. Sigh. Most times, it's better to ignore them no matter what they send/write and eventually they give up. Blocking always comes in handy.
3. The "have to have the last word" guys - usually, they just like to say some random comment before they leave. Other times, it's just plain rude comments under the cloak of Islam. But if you respond back to clarify, they will not leave until it's they, who have had the last word. My suggestion for anyone who comes across these people, just get out of that conversation even if it means letting them have the last word. There's a hadith to support this as well. I believe it's along the lines of - the better Muslim is he who remains silent & refrains from arguing even though he is in the right. Do correct me if I'm mistaken.

InshaAllah, the brothers don't take offense. I've obviously only been talking to brothers in the context of marriage. Perhaps sisters can be placed in similar categories?

In searching for a pic on rejection, I also found a funny sentence in an article. :P

Do share your comments on your experiences & advice on the best way to reject someone. :)


Ma Vie & Etc said...

I'm not married but I do have the occasional men who are a tad bit too forward and yes, they most definately cannot handle rejection well. Just like you said some of them aren't worth talking too and some just get plain aggressive. There will never be an easy way to reject someone, but as long as it's done as politely and sensitively as possible there is no problem.

Imperfect Stepford Wife said...

Great post...

#3 is the worse. I have been in situations where they actually became verbally insulting).

I know that the girl who wanted to marry hubby wanted to shove me over a bridge (she's his cousin), so that sucks for me, she will always be in the picture.

single4now said...

Ma Vie - Precisely! Do you feel it's better to give people a reason when rejecting them? Sometimes I feel people get more offended when you give a reason. And other times, no matter what you say they'll be offended.

Stepford Wife - true say. I've had a couple of those as well. :S It frustrates you at first because you are polite with them but you still get the backlash.

Aww, that sucks about your hubby's cousin. InshaAllah, she gets married soon and gets over it. :)

Ma Vie & Etc said...

I don't particularly feel the men who I have unfortunately been involved with needed an explanation. Though I totally agree with you in that when someone is rejected and they are given a reason it does hurt them. And some will go the extra mile to 'change' for you.

single4now said...

Hmm. Right. I don't really feel comfortable with asking/waiting for someone to change. Khair.

y said...

I never understood why people get angry when someone rejects them. When you reject someone's proposal, it doesn't mean you hate them or think they are a horrible person, it just means you don't think their goals and ambitions, etc. are close to yours.

Also, i dont think it is a good idea for someone to change for you, or something like that. Lots of people have told me that when someone 'changes' for you, that is only temporary. Once the 'honeymoon period' of the marriage ends, then they will go back to what they were doing before. It seems to me that a person who changes because they are convinced that it is the right thing to do will more likely change for the long run than if they change to please some particular person.

I don't think you should give a reason when you reject someone, unless you think they are doing something immoral and you think there is the possibility for them to change for the better. For any other reason, if you give them the reason, it may seem like you are telling them that there is something wrong with them. Like, if you tell them that you dont want to marry them because they want to move to China or something, it may seem like you are telling them that moving to China is a bad thing...LOL.

Anyway, i haven't even started looking for anyone yet, so this is all just theory, not from any real experience, so take it with a grain of salt.

peace out

single4now said...

"Once the 'honeymoon period' of the marriage ends, then they will go back to what they were doing before."

Yup. That's exactly my fear. People agree to something before marriage and may easily change their minds later.

"It seems to me that a person who changes because they are convinced that it is the right thing to do will more likely change for the long run than if they change to please some particular person."

Exactly! :P

I think sometimes you have to be selective. Some people ask to know why they are being rejected. I try to put it in a simple way without hurting their feelings. What I dislike is that many brothers never reject sisters. They just don't reply back. lol. I think it's better to at least be clear that you are not interested than to just leave it hanging and expect the sister to "figure it out".

Anonymous said...

Remaining anonymous for this post :)

After I completed my studies and before I left the United States, I had two girls ask me to marry them in the space of 24 hours. It was a pretty tragic thing, as I dont think I lead them on to think I was interested in getting married. I had only talked to them a few times during MSA (student organization) events.

One of these 'proposals' was over the phone.

Well I said no. And spent the better part of the rest of the day trying to console her. There was a lot of crying. :(

The other girl I met next day on my final trip to school. She told me she'd be willing to move with me. I was leaving in a week. But she was a lot more practical about it and accepted that it was too much for me to think of.

It was a heartbreaking ordeal. :(

single4now said...

Wow. Well, I'm happy that you clarified your interest or rather lack of it. It would be better than to just run away and ignore. I think that's more heart-breaking.

I was communicating with someone - we had only exchanged a couple of mails and I didn't hear from him for almost 2 weeks. I just assumed he wasn't interested and I can't be bothered to ask guys if have decided to reject me. lol. I usually just tell them to let me know if they are not interested in the first message. Yet, some seem to prefer dead silence. Must be bad experiences of their own I suppose. lol. Khair, just happens that the guy writes back wondering if I got his last email. Confusing people man!

Chiara said...

The classic female complaint is that the men just go silent/ disappear; the classic male complaint is that the women want closure ie to talk about it and cry (and sometimes go on and on talking about it and crying and not taking no for an answer).

I think that with someone who is decent you should offer an explanation, a true one that is not unduly hurtful but final. One I have used is that I was not ready for marriage (true), leaving out what I thought our incompatibilities were (eg. you are tooooo Catholic, or you aren't bright enough and we would become a disaster). I guess if you meet in the context of both looking for a marriage partner you would have to modify that excuse but the principle is the same.

With the obtuse of whatever gender it is better to cut them off gently but firmly.

I think the worst is to offer a false excuse that ultimately hurts the other person more, letting them think it is something they could change, or has been misunderstood or have them worry about something which isn't really a problem for them or you.

A friend said she always hoped that they each left each other a better person than they were before.

I hope that isn't too much commenting from a married Daughter of the Book. LOL :)

single4now said...

^ Thank you Chiara! You just proved my reason for why one should avoid "love" before anything is fixed. I don't cry when someone rejects me (and alhumdulillah it's not been too often) because there's no love. When I communicate with a guy I keep it really formal, boring and to the point. Actually, this attitude made a lot of guys run away because I seemed strict? Oh well, can't start a halal relationship with a not-so-halal attitude.

For guys, I think they should follow the same rule. If they get over-friendly then obviously girls will get hurt at some point especially if the communication is related to marriage. But in most situations I think a girl should be at least told you are not interested. If she wants a reason, keep it brief. If you tell a story, they'll pick out each word and sentence and then you'll be stuck in a discussion. If I'm giving reasons, I try to be brief but at the same time be polite.

I also agree that false excuses are not good. Don't mention the real reason if it's too hurtful. There's not much which can help a rejection but there's no reason to add insult to injury. :)

Habibti said...

i hate being rejected. but im not pretty good at rejecting others. moreso if they are clingy and dont understand that you are not interested. i get nasty. not like saying big words or mean stuffs. but anyways i wouldnt like to be rejected lol and i dont like rejecting people, but its necessary
one word of advice: no is no leave me alone

single4now said...

^ I get you. :) It's hard both ways, rejecting someone or getting rejected.

era said...

i get hurt when I get rejected even when i never met the guy. It's another guy who doesn't want me & another reason why I am singing & another miss opportunity at marriage

single4now said...

Don't think of it that way. Think of it as, if it were meant to be, it would happen. But yes, rejections can hurt. It's natural. The only way to deal with it is to not think about it too much. If they gave a reasoning which you can work on, then that's good. If it's something you cannot change, alhumdulillah kulli haal. Someone may dislike something in you that another person may love about you. To each their own. :)