Here’s a scenario: you’re at a bar with your gal pals just doing your own thing, when some creep comes up and tries to practically wife you. It can happen. But how do you properly reject said creep? I have a few ideas.
First, determine whether or not he’s actually a creep. Because I’m not saying that a guy hitting on you automatically equals a creepster. A guy is a creep if he doesn’t understand boundaries. He could look like Jon Hamm, but if he’s up in your face, prying about your personal life, and you’re not into it, he’s a creep. He could just be a nice guy who wants to get to know you and buy you a drink, or he could be a “nice guy” — one of those guys who claims to be a nice guy, but in actuality, uses that claim as a defense for being creepy, so that when you call him on it, he says something like, “Hey, I’m just being nice.” A truly nice guy doesn’t invade your personal space or pressure you.
Have we determined his creepdom? Great. Next, let him off gently. Unless he comes at you, guns blazing, there’s no reason not to be gentle with your rejection. You don’t need to be a jerk to get some peace and quiet. If he starts cursing at you or is trying to intimidate you, you can be less gentle. But start by saying something like, “Look, I’m just here to have a good night with my girl friends; I’m not interested, but thank you.”
If he doesn’t get it, then you can be a little more forceful, but here’s the key: always take the high road. He may call you a “bitch” (creeps love to throw that word around), but don’t stoop to his level and retaliate with a string of colorful curse words that would make Russell Crowe blush, because he isn’t worth it (the creep, not Russell Crowe. Although to me, they’re kind of the same thing.) You have every right to reject him, and yes, you have the right to do so while matching his level of in-your-faceness, but I encourage you to reject him in a calm fashion. No matter how agitated he gets, match that agitation with pure tranquility. He won’t know what to do with that.
If he still won’t leave you alone, it’s time to get a bouncer or a bartender, and let them know there’s a guy who won’t stop harassing you. They don’t want creeps in their bar anymore than you do, and they should be happy to help. You shouldn’t be the one forced to leave, afraid to go back to your usual stomping grounds because of creeps in the streets. Get them removed, go on with your night!
But what if you made the mistake of giving your phone number to a creep, and he won’t stop texting? This is when it’s entirely appropriate to be firm and cold. Again, take the high road, because he could screencap your conversation and post it online — you never know. So when responding, imagine that your mother is going to see it. Tell him you’re not interested and that he should stop texting and delete your number. Same thing goes if it’s online dating — as soon as you feel uncomfortable with what’s going on, shut it down. You have that right and you don’t need anyone’s permission to tell someone to kindly screw off. Be clear, concise and don’t reveal any further personal information.
Remember: it doesn’t matter what your friends think or what the guy says — if you feel threatened or uncomfortable, he’s a creep, and you’re allowed to stand your ground.
Photo: Nosferatu via Insomnia Cured Here via Flickr.