How to Nicely Tell Someone You Don't Want to Date

Rejection should be given politely and directly, not by word-of-mouth.
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While dating can be a fun and enjoyable experience, everyone eventually finds themselves in the position of needing to turn down a date. Though rejecting someone else, even politely, can be an uncomfortable situation, being honest and polite gives the other person the freedom to move on to more compatible dating partners.

1 Turning Down a Date

Keep things simple by saying, "No thank you," says social psychologist Jeremy Nicholson in an article for "Psychology Today." If you want to elaborate, you might say, "You have been so kind to me, but I don't have feelings like that for you," or "I don't feel a relationship would work for us." If the other person has asked you out on a date -- such as to a school dance -- you can also politely turn him or her down by saying something like, "I'm sorry, but someone already asked me," or "I have plans already, but I'll ask my friends if anyone is looking for a date," according to the "Seventeen" magazine article "How to Turn Down a Date Without Hurting Him." If you do feel the need to make up an excuse, make sure it is an honest one. If it's not, and the person finds out, it can be very hurtful.

Candice Coleman worked in the public school system as a middle school and high school substitute teacher. In addition to teaching, she is also a tutor for high school and college students.