Is there ever a right way to reject someone that you’ve been casually dating?

Most of us have been there, it may just have been a few dates, but we know it’s not right and instead of going into a relationship we find ourselves in a “situationship”.

Should we let them down in person, on the phone, or even by text?

Be clear and assertive.

Regardless of the physicality’s of how you do it, it’s always important to be clear and assertive that this just isn’t working for you. You don’t need to itemise all the issues you have with the other person, but you need to be clear that you really feel you are just not a good fit.

If you find yourself in a situation where they won’t listen and wish to persist, you may need to go one step further and block them.

Someone that chooses to ignore your words, is not the right person to be in a relationship with, do not let them persuade you otherwise. They are demonstrating power and control rather than equality and love.

How would you word a text?

If it’s a casual thing, stick with words like “it’s not a good fit for me” or “I’m just not feeling it”. Don’t get into a discussion or be argued out of your feelings. You can be gracious and thankful with them for their time and involvement. But, again, if they are persistent and try to persuade you, they are definitely not the right one for you, because they are refusing to listen. 

When would a phone call or in person be better?

I think it rather depends on the depth of relationship that you have developed and the level of trust that there is between you.  If the relationship has been relatively superficial with infrequent or few dates, then a simple text is fine. If things have become more involved between you, then a phone call or in person would be more appropriate.

Listen to how you feel in your body about being in their presence. If it gives you anxiety about their reaction and you are fearful you will not be able to hold your ground, then best not to do it in person or on the phone.

However, if they act grown-up and respectful towards you, then perhaps speak to them on the phone or in person. It’s your choice how you do it, as long as you always act with as much integrity and clarity as possible. 

What about online relationships?

Some relationships can get quite intense, even though you’ve never met, but you have no obligation to somebody you’ve only met online. If you know it isn’t right for you don’t waste your time pursuing it, just end it in a clear and kind way. 

What do you do if you feel they are becoming overly attached?

If you feel somebody is overly attached to you, then it is natural to be apologetic because you know you’re hurting their feelings. However, you still need to be clear, kind and frank. Keep it neutral – this is just not a good fit for me.

Can it sometimes be better to be ghosted than to receive a rejection text?

No, I think being ghosted leaves you with so many other questions and it’s much better to know where you stand. Closure ends the long emotional wait and means you are being treated with respect which is much less hurtful.

Anyone who ghosts you, and then comes back again, is really not worth your time. They don’t fit the basic criteria of trust and respect in a relationship. 

How do you deal with romantic rejection (ghosting?)

If a person ghosts you, it’s much more likely to be about them than you. They don’t have the courage to speak up or they don’t care for and respect your feelings. Either way, they are not good relationship material.

Why can rejection from a casual relationship feel so painful?

When we enter into relationship we go in with hope. It’s like moving into a new home, you begin to imagine what it might be like to be with that person, and when we imagine something, it can become real. We must do that to some degree to see if it feels right, but we can get ahead of ourselves.

If we stick with the housing analogy, it’s like we feel we’ve signed the contract when we haven’t even done the second viewing. We are falling in love with someone we don’t know. We are falling in love with the person we imagine them to be. We have not tested that against reality.

Deep set feelings we have carried from our childhood

In addition, issues of emotional attachment from childhood can come into play when we are beginning to date somebody. If there’s been parental absence, rejection, neglect, the feelings associated with that can come alive in the new relationship.

This means when there is a rejection, it’s not a simple – “Sorry, this isn’t working for me.” It’s much more in the magnitude of the rejection of a parent to a child and we will feel as if we are a child with all the intensity that goes with that.

If we have had significant emotional or practical rejection, absence or neglect in childhood, we are also likely to behave and believe in ways that predispose us to further rejection. We are also likely to attract people who are like our caregivers were when we were young.

If this keeps happening, it may be appropriate to get some professional help so that you can develop more emotional maturity yourself. Take care of yourself emotionally first and really discern who is a healthy person for you to be in a relationship with. That way you can save yourself a lot of unnecessary pain and can choose wisely.

Ending on a Positive Note

Love and Relationship Coach

When you’re ending a relationship, or someone is rejecting you, it’s never easy. However, always remember it’s happening for a reason – the relationship is not the right fit for you.

This means new beginnings and hopefully moving closer to your one true love.

My name is Heather Garbutt and I send you my love and wish you every success in the search for your true love. If you would like guidance on attracting, true, committed and healthy romantic love,  contact now me on