Is there a nice way to say 'thanks, but no' in online dating? August 28, I've recently joined okcupid, mostly to meet new people, and so far have had some really nice conversations. However, I've also had some people contact me that I don't seem to have anything in common with.
I don't want to just delete their messages - that seems rude, when they've gone out on a limb to message me. But what's a polite way to say I don't see anything to talk about, without that turning into its own conversation? It's happened to me plenty of times, and I don't take any offense.
That's how it goes. It happened to me a few times when I was doing this and I was never bothered by it. Nobody ever sent me a message just to say "no thanks". Most men on online dating sites will continue to pursue you until you block them or tell them to fuck off. Give me a try. I know you'll like me. That's one of the upsides to online dating, when someone sends that first message, there's no real loss in not getting a message back.
There's no rejection in the traditional sense. Personally, I'd rather just not hear back, where I ccould assume that they just weren't interested, rather than dealing with a rejection message, however polite it might be. If someone doesn't respond I take that as a clear sign of disinterest. If someone told me 'no, thanks' I'd be pretty upset and it would be quite crushing to my ego.
But if the mail goes ignored, it kind of tapers off as you lose hope, and after a few days you don't even remember. X - but occasionally, if they sent a thoughtful and well-written initial message, I'd respond with a "I just started seeing someone, but thanks, and good luck!
I used to respond to people to say no thanks in an effort to be polite and there were some guys who would just not let it go and keep emailing me. Then I would feel extra rude because I had already responded to them nicely once and therefore felt obligated to continue. As difficult as it was for me I had to establish a firm "no-reply" policy to ones I wasn't interested in.
When I was single I was on several dating sites, and it would never fail to irritate me when women would simply ignore an email. A wink or something, sure, okay -- no problem. But if I have taken the time to write a two or three paragraph email, a simple response such as "No, thanks, I don't think we're suited for each other" is a polite way to reply. To ignore a custom-written email is quite rude, in my book.
But not all of us are idiots, you know. And then there's those that actually read your profile and are genuinely interested, and would probably include some info on common interests or something. The latter should at least deserve a 'thanks, but I'm not interested'. The former, just ignore. Thank god, someone with a heart. It is unbearably rude to just ignore messages. Someone is, indeed, going out on a limb.
The least you can do is say "Thank you, but I'm not interested'. Give them one chance to do the "Aww but I'm so awesome you'll love me" shtick, say "No thank you" again, and block them. Really, I don't understand how people think it's okay to just ignore other people when they're putting themselves out there. To me, it's rude to write back. For like 3 milliseconds, you get my hopes up when I see that someone has written me back, and then I open up the letter to find out you wrote me to tell me the exact same thing that I could have figured out if you hadn't written at all.
The only solution, then, is to do what makes you happy. Do you feel worse when you delete an email without replying, or when you reply and then occasionally get a response of the "but why not? Do whichever makes you less fed up with the process. Or, do unto others as you would like them to do unto you, knowing full well that some of them would actually prefer the opposite done unto them. But understand that whatever you choose, you won't be able to make everyone happy, and you'll just have to live with that.
I know it may feel crummy, but not responding really is the best option. That way, like 23skidoo said, you'll be able to avoid continued attention from people you don't want to associate with.
If they can't handle an un-returned message, that speaks to something within them that is off. There are an infinite number of reasons why you wouldn't reply; if they're healthy then they'll accept that as part of the process.
It takes a lot of courage just to put up a profile, so good luck and I hope you find someone special! What I got back were some really crazed responses.
One guy wrote me back after the "no thanks" and told me, and I quote, I was "the nail in the coffin" for him, that women were bitches, that my not accepting his offer to communicate was just the last straw for him, and he was ending his online dating membership because of me. Sheesh, how'd I let that charmer go?! Several others wrote back similar insulting things which led to my deciding that ignoring the emails was the best option.
This is contrary to my normal approach to life, but so it is. From the guy's perspective, I've had two guy friends tell me they would get their hopes up when they saw their mailboxes full, only to be disappointed when they discovered it was full of "thanks, but no thanks" responses as 23skidoo said. I found a balanced approach worked best for me: However, if it was clearly a "form letter" seeking my attention and most of them were , I'd not respond at all. It's not even rude's second cousin.
Not responding is so unrelated to rude that they don't even have the same number of chromosomes, legs or eyes. If you're not interested, you don't really want them to show up in your searches, so add them to your 'dead to me' list, too.
The other day, someone QuickMatched me. Thing is, this caginess doesn't work; in my "who's viewed you" list it tells me when people have looked at my ad. I'm not an idiot. So I saw that I'd been matched. Looked at the profile, saw that we had a few things in common, but, frankly, I didn't find her physically attractive in the least, I found some of her hobbies laughable and worthy of derision, and she's married and poly; I am not poly-friendly. I sent her a note saying that I wasn't interested in my usual comic easy-letdown style.
But a couple of hours later I considered: She responded to my note, but I elected to delete it unread and block her. I was probably just feeling extra chatty. But the conclusion remains: I shouldn't have sent her a note.
There's a world of difference between "Hi, I saw on your profile that you're reading A Suitable Boy -- I read it last year and thought it was great, but didn't really care for the ending. How far along are you in it? You seem pretty cool -- if you'd like to talk books sometime, message me back! LOL rite me back K" as in the first, I'd think, merits a "thanks, but I'm not really interested" and the second no reply.
Getting no response to such messages is a common occurrence and it's totally acceptable. My current girlfriend who I met on OKC would always send polite rejections to guys who she wasn't interested in. She eventually decided to delete her account because she couldn't deal with all of the messages that she felt an imperative to respond to.
Given the trade off between getting courteous rejection messages and having more women on the site, I'd would pick the latter without a doubt. When people send the first message, they know they might not get a response. It's not a big deal. If it seems like the fellow in question actually took the time to compose a thoughtful email based on what he read in your profile, the nice thing to do is to send back a polite message telling him you're not interested.
If you get a message from a guy that just says "Hey what's up? That's just the way it is. It's not rude at all.
Don't respond to someone unless you're interested. If I find a person on OKC interesting, I spend 20 minutes studying her profile and making comments and followup questions.
It's OK not to be impressed, but I would appreciate 15 seconds of your time to know that you're not interested. Even with a form letter. Of course, those who don't put effort in shouldn't get it back. It's just a social norm I disagree with. Unless that occasional profile comes along that looks like a match made in heaven, in which case I bash my head in wondering what she didn't like about me.
Someone responded that recipients don't owe me anything. To an extent, this is true. But think of it in a more tangible context. Say a stranger walks up to me and asks what book I'm reading. I could keep reading like a deaf-mute and pretend he's not there, because, hey, I don't owe him anything. Do a couple sentences about the weather, or that crazy water-skiing squirrel you saw on the YouTube. Maybe I haven't run into many desperate men, but the conversation has always died fairly quickly after that.