Have You Read this Blog? “I’m 26. What’s a Filter?”
A 26-year-old female writer named Quin Woodward Pu recently posted a blog about a breakup text she had received from a man she had only gone out with a few times. While his text was actually honest, appropriate, and classy, the only thing she read from his message was “I REJECT YOU I REJECT YOU I REJECT YOU, HA!” I assume this because her reply to his message was, in polite terms, bat shit crazy. I’ll let you see for yourself:
From her blog post, “I’m 26. What’s a filter?”:
“It all started two weeks ago, when I met some rando at a bar. He was friendly enough, but annoyingly and sloppily drunk, which is why I offered my email address when he asked for my number. We emailed later that weekend, and I met up for a few drinks, which eventually turned to dinner, and then champagne. We had relatively good chemistry, but then, I kinda have chemistry with pretty much everyone, because I really like talking to people and winning over complete strangers.
We had dinner the following weekend (as in, two days ago), and it was equally fun. I invited him to my birthday party, which I’m holding this weekend for my closest 125 friends. He wouldn’t be in town, so he scheduled a weekend in Virginia wine country the following weekend. It seemed a bit much, but I agreed to a singular day trip. When we parted that day, I didn’t think much of anything. In fact, I actually headed out to a bar to meet up with a former lover from 2012, with whom I may or may not entertain a few exchanges here and there. #timesbeing.
So imagine my surprise–which quickly turned to fury–when I received the following text out of the blue yesterday.
I was stunned into paralysis. I had no words–this never happens–and I just felt short of breath. There were many things that pissed me off, but I was so flustered I couldn’t even articulate them. Again, this is a serious problem for a writer and effusive communicator.
I was still so agitated 10 hours later that I had to leave opera rehearsal early. This is a serious no-no, given that opening night is Saturday at the Organization of American States.
Then I realized: I am on the eve of my 26th birthday. Why am I stewing instead of just expressing what I really feel? There is practically nothing to lose from just telling the truth.
So then it came. “And it came. And it came.” –(illicit tax-payer funded sext. Don’t worry, these have since been screenshotted to his superiors).
Cheers to 26! And may I (and you, and your girlfriends, moms, grandmothers, daughters, etc.) never remain silent in the bombastic, outrageously chauvinistic face of an insecure man.
(I would love to know how she “wins over complete strangers.” But I think I already have a hunch, given that fear is the most powerful motivator.)
Now, please join me in one moment of stunned silence, followed by one elongated, unanimous sigh…
I’m 24. What’s a Filter?
1. “I kinda have chemistry with pretty much everyone…I like winning over complete strangers.“ This sentence instantly brought this image to my mind:
This sentence makes you sound incredibly arrogant, so even before I hear your tragic tale of textbook rejection, I’ve already lost some empathy for you.
2. “I invited him to my birthday party, which I’m holding this weekend for my closest 125 friends.“
Empathy Level at this point: I Just Can’t.
3. “In fact, I actually headed out to a bar to meet up with a former lover from 2012, with whom I may or may not entertain a few exchanges here and there.”
So now, if I haven’t already presumed so by your use of endearing terms and phrases such as, “rando” and “relatively good chemistry,” you have now clearly informed me that you don’t actually care for this man in any meaningful way. Also, you just used the term “former lover.” There are only two types of people in this world who would use a phrase like that:
a. People who just want to watch the world burn…
b. And people I want to be best friends with…
(I am pretty sure you would try to burn the heart out of me, rather than have vodka and a piece of toast for breakfast with me, so I’ll assume you’re the former.)
4. “I was stunned into paralysis. I had no words–this never happens–and I just felt short of breath.”
This never happens? You’ve never been politely rejected before? Who are you, Marion Cotillard? I’m pretty sure she’s the only person on the planet who can make that claim. (And maybe Naomi Campbell, but that’s only because anyone who wants to stop dating her has to fake their own death and enter the Witness Protection Program in order to get out of it alive.)
5. Hats off to the guy who sent her the breakup text. While I am not a general fan of the “text” breakup, it is certainly much classier than the “I will now fade you out of my life by being too busy” style of breakup. (Also, they’d only gone out a couple of times, so the text doesn’t seem inappropriate.)
It’s difficult to tell someone you don’t want to see them anymore — most of us don’t take any pleasure in hurting others. It took courage to tell her, in a very polite way, that he wasn’t interested in getting into a relationship with her. It’s still rejection, but at least he had lovely things to say about her, and he blamed his “state of flux,” for his decision. You’ve got to take it for what it is: He doesn’t want to go out with you anymore, and that’s painful, but at least he was nice and respectful about it.
6. The confident, classy, and even sexy response to this text message would have been something like this:
“I understand. And thanks, I appreciate that :) Good luck to you, too.”
Why do I think this would be a better response? Because it’s not angry, and it’s not cold. It’s completely accepting– it’s already moved on. It says, “I don’t need you to want me to feel good about myself.” It says, “I can take rejection with class and respect, even if I don’t like it.” It says, “I don’t really care that much, because if I did I would reply with a scorching passive-aggressive response.” It says, “I’m too sexy for your rejection. Too sexy for your state of flux. Too sexy for this cat. Too sexy for you oh sooo much it hurrrrts.” That’s what he would have read, had you written a brief and completely accepting response back. And it probably would have driven him a little crazy…
But you see what you did there? You did nothing but show him you are terrified of rejection. By being sarcastic and passive-aggressive and wayyyyy too in love with yourself, that’s all you did.
7. I’m not a fan of “games.” I appreciate people who can say how they feel. But there is a time and a place for that. And then there is a time and a place to shut up, buy a bottle of Chardonnay, complain about him to your friends, and move on.
8. As a 24 year old woman with zero books published and a rented studio, I feel sorry for you. I don’t mean that in a mean way, I just wish you and many other women would not be so terrified of rejection. If you actually believed you were so amazing that you were above any kind of rejection from a guy like this, you would have never responded the way you did. I hate rejection, I think everyone does, but it should never be a catalyst for putting someone else down, or acting rude, or sending someone’s boss the sexts he had sent you while you were together as a way of getting “revenge.” Rejection should only be a catalyst for believing in yourself no matter what. And wine. So much wine…
Follow the editor, @GeorgieGuinane on Twitter. It’ll make her feel better about her lack of published books and real estate.