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Don’t ask why, guys

August 2, 2010

This weekend I had one of the most awkward conversations it’s possible to have as a single girl: the “why I don’t want to sleep with you” conversation.

A bit of background on this guy: I would have been wiser to shut down the flirting months and months ago when it first started. I have no excuse, other than going along with and escalating the flirtation seemed like a good idea at the time.

But anytime things move from flirting to something a bit more serious, I put on the brakes. And this particular character has got it in his head that he wants to know why.

At this point in my life, I don’t feel particularly obligated to answer this question. I’m a grown-ass woman. I do what – and who – I want, and I don’t need to justify my decisions to anyone.

This time I did give an answer. I was honest without going into detail: Dude, I’m just not that into you.

He wouldn’t let up: but why?

Attention men: you do not actually want to know why.

If I do tell you why, you will argue with me, get defensive, get offended and finally (probably) piss me off. 

What you actually want is what this character eventually* admitted he wanted: tips and tricks to help you try to change my mind. 

I don’t change my mind about this kind of thing. Very few women do.

My very smart girl friend describes it like this: women have two ladders for the men they know. We meet someone new and almost right away put them on either the friend ladder or the romantic/sexy ladder. You can have some say over how high you go on the ladder – rescuing me on the side of the road will get you higher up, blow off plans with me and you go down a few rungs.

But here’s the thing: you can’t control which ladder you’re on, and you can’t switch ladders. In my life, I’ve only turned a friend into a boyfriend once, and that was in high school.

Guys don’t understand this because they only have one ladder. Pretty much every woman they meet is a potential partner. I’ve even heard dudes admit that the reason they’ll keep a female friend around is on the off chance they’ll get the opportunity to sleep with her.

I hate rejection, too. I’ve had dudes go from flirty descriptions of their penile piercings or gushing about how glad they are to have met me to complete radio silence with no explanation at all. I could kill myself trying to work out why they’ve lost interest, and I occasionally indulge in a bit of sleuthing.

The results have never once been satisfactory.

The only reasonable thing to do is to acknowledge that I don’t want to be involved with someone who isn’t interested in me and move on.

I hope my dudes can come to this realization, too. And really hope they stop asking me why I don’t want them.

*but not before arguing with me, getting defensive, getting offended and kind of pissing me off

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