How Men Vs Women Handle Rejection

February 8, 2019  |  
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handling rejection with grace

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Is it just me, or do men take rejection poorly—like really poorly? A brief look at history would show you that a lot of men who started the bloodiest of wars did so shortly after some woman turned down their advances. “If I don’t get what I want, then everyone must die!” seems to be their outlook. I guess that’s what can happen when one’s ego is inflated from a young age (as the egos of men often are). We also live in a society that teaches men an “Every man for himself” outlook and a “Be aggressive to get ahead/step on others to get where you’re going” mentality. Meanwhile, it teaches women to work together and support each other. Truthfully, we’d all probably be the happiest and most successful somewhere in between those two extremes, but when it comes to facing rejection, I’m glad I have the emotional tools of a woman. Here are ways men versus women handle rejection.


Men cancel the night’s plans

If this is your boyfriend or husband who has experienced career rejection, you can bet that date night is cancelled. He just can’t think of anything else for the night or compose himself enough to be a fun date.


Women put it aside

Women are better at compartmentalizing. We raise babies, after all—we know how to smile at someone when we actually want to cry. If we have plans with someone, we won’t cancel on them all because we’re down about some rejection.


If men don’t cancel, they’re in a mood

If a man doesn’t cancel his plans with you after some career rejection, you’re going to wish he had. He’ll spend the whole night being at best quiet and checked out and at worst super pessimistic whenever he does decide to speak.



Women contain their grumpiness

Women are better at containing their negative emotions. We understand that right now is time to enjoy the nice restaurant or the movie, and later we can unpack our feelings about that rejection. We don’t just let our upset splash all over anyone we encounter.


Men get all big picture/doomsday about it

Men will get very doomsday about things. They’ll start questioning their existence, where they’re going in life, and if anything good will ever happen again. They’re a bit of drama queens, don’t ya think?


Women take it, one event at a time

Women take things one event at a time. They don’t collect, remember, and string together every rejection they’ve ever had, building some case proving that life sucks and the world is terrible. They unpack this event, and release it.


Men dwell

Men have a tendency to dwell on things. They will obsess for days over how they could have done things differently and how things would have gone their way if it weren’t for this one little factor.


Women make a game plan

Women dwell a bit on how that now past event could have gone differently, but they rather quickly move onto asking how they’ll do things differently next time. Because there’s no turning back the clock.


Men approach next steps with anger

If men make a game plan, they do so with anger. They decide the best thing to do is adapt a cutthroat, selfish, and intimidating attitude. They have rage in their eyes and a “Don’t f*&k with me” outlook.


Women approach next steps with eyes open

Women move forward with a new awareness of how people may try to f&*k with them, and some calm tactics on how to handle that. But they don’t go out their, guns blazing, giving attitude to everyone right away.


Men seek revenge

Men seek revenge a-la all the dudes who have started wars over being romantically spurned. Whether they want revenge on a woman who turned them down romantically or a colleague who wouldn’t back them on some project, they waste their efforts on vengeance.


Women understand it isn’t personal

Women seem to be better at understanding that it isn’t personal. We know that, when people do things that hurt us, it’s often because they are hurt in some way or they are insecure in some way. We know we don’t make anything better by seeking revenge.


Men flex in some way

Men may try to flex on the world in some way. They peacock, if you will, showing off their big, bright feathers (or new, shiny sports car or bulging muscles after living in the gym for a week straight). They make attempts to fortify themselves and look better than everyone. They do many of the same things they do to attract the female eye.


Women admit sadness/seek support

Women admit that they don’t feel strong right now—they feel weak and dejected. They don’t pretend they’re all good. They seek their support system. They look for comfort and the strength of their loved ones while they recover.


Men feel insulted

Men can be very insulted if they’re rejected—romantically or professionally. They see it as an offense. They decide the other person is dumb, ugly, or something else bad to help them lick their wounds.


Women see both perspectives

Women have heightened empathy. We can see an issue from both sides, and understand why we may have been rejected—we can understand what the other person may have felt/thought/needed. It keeps us from boiling over.

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