How to shut down guys who don’t get it

by Kristen MacBride

Antonio Zaragoza / Photo Editor

Many guys will extol the benefit of a good pickup line. It’s something they can pull out of their back pocket at parties in the hopes of impressing gullible girls. Girls, however, need to have the opposite in their arsenal: a polite, yet firm, way to turn away guys who just don’t get it.

There are the guys with the tacky, oftentimes insulting, pickup lines who come creeping out of nowhere to corner unsuspecting girls. These girls are caught off guard and may be left defenseless against the onslaught of the guy’s over-eagerness. This is where having a shutdown on hand is essential.

Although there is no excuse for vulgar or cheesy advances, the exchange between an overly zealous suitor and his target is often a classic case of miscommunication. Ladies, we must ask ourselves: Is it entirely his fault, or are we partly to blame for his undeterred persistence? Are we sending a clear message beyond any possible misinterpretation? Most often, it is a combination of both.

Many times what inhibits mutual understanding and encourages a creeper’s creepiness is the girl’s timidness and difficulty in delivering a definitive rejection. Advances are often answered with giggles and smiles among friends at the idiocy of his remarks and behavior. While this display of disinterest is clearly understood in “girl world,” guys often see this as playing coy and shy.

There is no room for this ambivalent communication style. Now is the time to deliver unmistakable, clear rejection. Stopping this painfully uncomfortable situation calls for mustering up the gumption to be honest and stop the miscommunication before it starts. The faster and more clearly this can be conveyed, the better. More than likely, a simple yet firm and undisputable “no” will halt his attempts.

“I have a problem with saying no when guys ask me for my number because I feel really bad, and I don’t want to give out a fake number because then I just feel mean,” political science freshman Lauren Maharaj said. “One time I gave my number to this guy and he would text me at least three times a day. I would never respond because his texts were either too flirty or too weird. He finally gave up after three months.”

When it comes to texting and indirect communication, it is tempting to just avoid the other party altogether. Unfortunately, this tactic can take too long and is often ineffective in deterring an overenthusiastic guy and is sure to only make things more awkward if you see this person often.

A polite, yet firm expression of honesty will surely cease all awkward, unanswered messages, but if it’s just too difficult to personally display this, sending a message such as: “Error 23: SMS Not Delivered; The number (insert your number here) has blocked you. Please Try again later” could do the trick. Without doubt, that will shut down any individual’s advances, interest or self-esteem.

Although it is best to confront a lurking creeper with brutal honesty, there are more gentle ways to snub him. If he misses all subtle rejections and signs of disinterest and asks for a number, it is always easy to say, “Just add me on Facebook.”