Although dating is a great way to connect with potential baes, one of the trickiest parts of getting to know someone new is, well, learning how to reject them. Sometimes, you meet people who are great on paper, but you don't end up clicking IRL. And because no one has time for drawn-out situationships and awkward text dodging, it may be helpful to know how to reject someone nicely over text. According to Trina Leckie, breakup expert and host of the podcast breakup BOOST, it is best to save rejection texts for people you've only been out with once or twice. Any more, and you probably might want to do it in person.
"Everyone knows that you don't connect with everyone you meet," Leckie previously told Elite Daily. "I feel it is OK to reject someone via text if you just went on one date with them and decided there was no chemistry." However, if you've been out more than a few times, letting them know how you feel face-to-face or over the phone might be more considerate options. Needless to say, if you've been in a relationship with them, breaking up via text should be avoided. "I think it is inappropriate to reject someone via texting if you have actually been dating the person," said Leckie. "Spending a lot of time with someone, only to then make them feel like you are just throwing them away via text is pretty cold and insensitive."
Of course, there are exceptions to every rule. If someone's made you feel unsafe or uneasy in any way, breaking things off via text is probably the safest way to go. "They [should be] used when communicating face-to-face isn't considered to be a good option," Grant H. Brenner, M.D., psychiatrist, psychoanalyst, and co-author of Irrelationship, previously told Elite Daily. Once you've decided sending a text is the best way to handle the situation, it's important to be as kind and respectful as possible. Even though being rejected never feels good, writing something unnecessarily hurtful or offensive could make them feel even worse.
"The ingredients that go into the worst rejection texts are ones that paint the person as globally horrible, blaming them for the problems and suggesting it is all them and it won't ever change," Brenner explained. On the other hand, a considerate rejection text emphasizes a lack of connection instead of criticizing someone on a personal level. If you're struggling to come up with what to write, being direct is usually the best way to communicate your feelings. "I don't want to waste your time and I don't feel like we had the kind of chemistry I'm looking for. Good luck," offers clarity without getting into details that could undermine their self-esteem. They don't need to know that you knew from the first moment you met that there was zero physical attraction.
Ultimately, if they ask for more details, it's up to you to decide if you want to get into specifics. That said, keeping unpleasant correspondence as brief as possible should help them move past your rejection ASAP. Even though letting someone down might not be easy, it's way worse to let them get more invested in a possible future with you when you already know it's not going to happen. So, if you already know you're not into them, the best thing you can do is be honest while still taking their feelings into consideration.