Just recently, I got a message from a guy on a dating app who told me that I had a "cute vibe." One week later, when I had forgotten to respond, I got my second message: "Actually, your vibe is lame and vanilla. Peace!"
I'm sure you're familiar with this kind of thing: being catcalled on the street, and when you don't respond, getting a "your ass is fat anyway!" in return. I will take that as a compliment, sir, thank you.
A similar kind of phenomenon was shown very clearly last night on The Bachelorette.
Those of you in Bachelor Nation know that Rachel is the MVP of Bachelorettes. She's straightforward, she doesn't take bullsh*t, and when she needs clarification on something, she immediately asks for answers. She's a woman with boundaries and standards, and she won't budge on the requirements for either.
So when she's having a conversation with Josiah, and she suspects that he's being a little bit too smooth — and not really falling for her, but more for the idea of her — she brings this to his attention.
But of course, it completely goes over his head, and he avoids the chance at any deep, meaningful conversation with more smoothness and surface compliments.
Rachel has absolutely no time for that kind of nonsense in her love life (because she is a strong, powerful woman and my new role model!), so Josiah is ultimately sent home packing.
In Josiah's exit interview, he says:
Nobody in this house thought I was going home. Nobody. I came in here abundantly confident. I have no words to explain, to articulate her decision-making. It's just weird, dude, the people who she kept in the house over me. You think you can have a better chance with Matt than me? And I love Alex, the Soviet Union KGB spy, but you really think that KGB agent has something over me? And I love Adam, but you think a guy that brings a doll that looks like Mike Meyers is better than me? Woman, you have some poor judgment.
How could he go after the doll like that!!!
But seriously, here is the problem: Surprisingly, rejection isn't always personal.
I've broken up with guys, only to have them tell every single one of our mutual friends that I am "psycho," while they are calling me on the phone every night, begging to get back together.
What is it with men and the habit they have to spring into defense and aggression when they don't immediately get what they want? Regardless, men should grow out of it, because it doesn't serve them anymore, especially in the romance department.
If a guy is a jerk after you reject him, then it's a clear sign he probably never respected you in the first place. This isn't a guy who has the emotional vulnerability it takes to actually fall in love with someone.
More often than not, you're going to be rejected, and it has nothing to do with you. Chemistry is a delicate thing. You could be the most incredible, wonderful person in the world, but you're just not the right incredible, wonderful person for the person you're dating.
In the case of The Bachelorette, Josiah immediately takes his dismissal as a personal affront and uses his exit interview as an opportunity to throw everyone — his competitors, Rachel, and a doll — under the bus. He thinks it will make everyone else look bad.
But — newsflash, Josiah — the only person who looks bad is you.
If a guy is a jerk after you reject him, what he cares about is his own ego, reputation, and saving face.
More importantly, this is a guy who doesn't respect himself. This is a guy who perceives everything as a negative, personal attack. Essentially, it's his world, and you're just living in it. And if you don't want to live in it, there's something wrong with you, and you're disposable.
Even if you're rejecting a complete stranger, that guy at the bar you don't want a drink from, or that person from Bumble you decided you don't want to message back, their immediate reaction shouldn't be to diss you when they think they're being dismissed.
Instead, if a guy respects you, then the breakup will be like Rachel and Kenny's: loving and peaceful. You honor what you had with one another, wish each other well for the future, and separate with love.
So remember, if a guy insults you, it's a reflection of where he's at in life — not who you are as a person or your decisions. Even more, it's a great indication that you made the right decision not to be with them.