You might have a woman in your life who keeps hinting that she wants more than friendship with you but you don't want a relationship with her. You want to tell her that you’re not interested without hurting her and you don’t want things to leave her wondering what you want. With a gentle spirit and careful forethought, you can let her down easy.
Know why you’re not interested. If you’re married or are currently dating someone else, communicate that to her. If you're not seeing someone else, seriously think through whether or not you could be interested in this person. Communicating truthfully and tactfully about your feelings is not only the right thing to do but it will really make for the best solution. If you give someone a phony reason, the other person may try to change something to make you interested. It may seem hard, but honesty here really is the best policy.
Affirm your friendship. Most likely you are friends with this person who is interested in you. If not, affirm your willingness to be friends. After all everyone can use more friends. It may be a difficult time to say you want just want to be friends she wants more, but be sincere and demonstrate that you are open to getting to know her more as a friend. If for some reason you just can’t be friends, be sure to clearly explain why.
Talk to the woman. Don’t write a note. Don’t leave it to chance. Don’t talk around the subject and think you have an understanding. After you have done everything else to prepare, set aside a time alone in person where you can both talk openly and honestly. Tell her you would like to talk to her but don’t make it appear like a date, such as over dinner or a movie -- make it clear it is a time to talk.
Be gentle, but firm. If you’re really and truly not interested, be clear and don’t settle for anything other than a good understanding that you will not be starting a relationship. If you start a relationship on a trial basis it will only hurt more to end it later.
Give her space but don’t disappear. When everything is settled, give each other some space and time to sort things out and for everyone’s emotions to settle down. Talk to the other person and let them know that you think it would be a good idea to take a break from seeing each other for a day or two. But don’t wait too long before making contact and talking again. This amount of time may be different for everyone but you should give it at least a few days. If this person is a co-worker, don’t go out of your way to avoid them. Do the work you have to together but don’t start personal conversations that will lead to somewhere you're both not ready to go.
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- Treat her the way you would want to be treated in a similar situation.
- Don't be mean or hurtful.
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