Dealing with rejection

Have you ever been rejected by someone you really liked? Maybe you tried to talk to someone you had a crush on, and they totally ignored you. Maybe you asked out that cutie from chemistry, and they said no. You probably felt disappointed, embarrassed, sad, upset, or maybe a little angry.

We get it - rejection’s not fun. So how do you deal with it?

First of all, understand that rejection is a part of life.

It’s a sucky part of life, but rejection happens to all of us at some point, whether it’s being told no for a job, a scholarship, acceptance to college, or a date with a certain person. It can be really difficult not to take “no” personally. But part of dating is opening yourself up to someone else, and with that comes the possibility that they may not respond the way you want them to.

Just remember that your whole self-worth doesn’t have to be wrapped up in whether or not someone wants to date you – there’s so much more to you than who you’re dating! And while rejection might sting at first, it also allows other opportunities to come into our lives, and maybe that can (eventually) be a good thing.

Accept how you feel.

Like we said before, you might feel disappointed or upset after being told no. These feelings are normal and you can definitely work through them! First, it’s important to just acknowledge and accept how you feel. You could try saying to yourself: “Hey, this really sucks, and I’m [sad, hurt, angry]. But it’s going to be okay.”

Keep in mind, rejection can trigger a lot of unhealthy feelings and behaviors, so check in with yourself:

  • are you acting out?
  • are your feelings starting to get a little out of control?
  • are you building things up in your mind that aren’t true?

If so, it could help to journal about your feelings, or talk to a friend, family member, or counselor you trust. You could also call, chat or text with a love is respect advocate.

Be respectful of the other person’s decision and feelings.

So you asked someone out and they said no. Ouch. We know it hurts, but yelling at them, stalking them, or trying to coerce or intimidate them into dating you after they’ve said no are considered unhealthy or even abusive behaviors.

The healthy response is to respect their decision. No one owes anyone their affections, and everyone has the right to decide who they will and won’t date. Even if you think you’d be perfect for each other, if the other person doesn’t feel the same way, they have a right to their feelings.

Focus on stuff that you enjoy.

You might want to take a step back from the situation and just focus on yourself for a while. Hang out with friends, watch movies, listen to music, learn a new skill – anything that interests you and that you find fun. This is helpful because it reminds you that you have your own life and lots of other great things going on! And hey, even though one person said no, that doesn’t mean you’ll never find someone else who says yes.

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