Good or bad?
Part 1 of a Series
Harlan Jacobsen Copyright © 2003
Everyone has a bit of a problem with rejection; some
have only a light, momentary, slightly bad feeling about it.
Others’ behavior and actions are greatly affected by
fear of rejection and their sense of well being is tied up by
who rejects them.
Many are rejection cripples and are emotionally damaged
every time they are rejected.
In helping get people from an emotional “rejection cripple”
stage to “I like
and readily accept rejection” stage, we deal with three different
facets of rejection.
TIME REJECTIONS - RELATIONSHIP ACCEPTANCE ENDS.
They had accepted and approved you and now they no longer
do. You feel short-changed,
mad—your expectations that this was going to be forever were
not fulfilled. They
got out before you did and that hurts and worst of all, they
didn’t check with you first.
Now you must go through a stage of addictive withdrawal
similar to an addict going through withdrawal period and it
hurts; it is painful.
Someone graduated from the relationship and you weren’t
We need to realize in dealing with time rejection that
people’s values change very much faster now along with needs
and priorities changing as they grow over time.
Everything and everyone is changing at an accelerated
pace. Our thinking
and expectations are geared to another time when people and
things changed not at all or very slowly.
The three D’s of time rejection are Divorce - 50% of
the population will experience it at least once.
Deceased - 50% of the remaining marrieds will have to
deal with rejection by death.
Psychologists say death is the ultimate form of rejection.
Dealing with loss through death is very little different
than through divorce.
One widow was heard to exclaim as they lowered the casket,
“How can you leave me now, you dirty S.O.B., just when I needed
you so much.”
Desertion - the poor man’s (and increasingly woman’s)
5% of the population use this method of ending a marriage.
If you are a woman your statistical chances if you are
married are about 80% that you will have to deal with one of
these three methods of time rejection.
That’s 3 to 1 odds that if you are a married women you
are going to have one of the three D’s in your future.
And as a single, you have to handle time rejection regularly.
Time rejection is a fact of life.
We might as well recognize that and learn to handle it
Temporary is factual; permanent or “forever after” is
a fairy tale. You
are here on earth temporarily; it is upsetting to know, realize
and face the fact is it’s not forever.
Life is good even if it is tempor-ary, for however long
All relationships are temporary and they are good for
however long they last.
We find it difficult to face the fact that all relationships
are temporary. People know that relationships change and move
on. Growing, graduating
from a relationship, is a fact of life but we find it difficult,
preferring to hold on to our fairy tale belief that if the “love”
or relationships are true or any good they go on forever.
They don’t—and we need to accept the facts of life that
we are either going to be rejected over time or reject others—
The second type of rejection we are dealing with now
is what we call INITIAL REJECTION.
Initial Rejection is when someone rejects you on first
impression and you are the rejectee the person rejected.
About 10% of the people you meet will seem to accept
and approve you but promptly discard you, which is in effect
also rejection, only with a slight delay.
Most of us who are rejected initially will rarely make
another attempt. I
know it took me almost four years to be where I would ever ask
anyone to dance again that had ever turned me down for a dance
Look at Rover—the mangy mutt comes in wagging his tail
and rubbing against you—he wants a pet, but you turn him down.
Doesn’t bother him; he goes on to someone else and finds
someone willing to give him some pets. Now, when he comes in again tomorrow he doesn’t hold a grudge—he
offers himself again, and if he is turned down he’ll try again
tomorrow. It is
a long time before Rover gives up on you.
We say rejection today is rejection for now only.
Maybe I have my eye on someone else right now and though
you seem interesting and exciting I want to check out this other
Next up and most difficult for some people is THE ABILITY
TO REJECT OTHERS. It’s
the ability to reject is the ability to stop being used, to
be able to reject unwanted advances, so you can stop being “thinged”
by everyone who finds you attractive.
The ability to realize when to say no, be able to say
it pleasantly and without embarrassments.
We find that many second time arounders have what I call
a “bananas” or
extreme rejection policy—one extreme or the other.
They either reject everybody or they reject no one -
sort of “I can’t get hurt by being rejected if I reject them
first.” Or “Rejection
hurts so bad I just couldn’t hurt them by rejecting them so
I pretend I accept them.”
I waste their time and mine and when I get fed up and
have resentment enough, then I reject and “hurt” them.
When you don’t really like them but can’t reject them,
then you feel used.
If you are a rejection cripple,
1. You feel
defective when rejected.
2. You are
upset, blood pressure goes up. (Stress)
3. You feel
like you failed or you are a failure.
4. You are
“afraid” of trying again.
5. You won’t
let anyone get really close again; you’ll sabotage the relationship
if it gets close.
6. You hide
out at home a good part of the time; no risk of being rejected
there; deal me out of the game.
7. You reject
others in advance so they can’t reject you.
(Let’s go, nothing but a bunch of losers here.)
8. You date
people way below your capability because you know turkeys won’t
reject you. (No
use asking sexy Pat to go to coffee, I’d probably get turned
down. I’ll ask
Susy Klutz (or Harry Slob), I know she’ll accept me.)
only people you really don’t like or respect so you won’t get
involved and get hurt by time rejection later.
10. If you are a rejection cripple, rejection causes
you great inner turmoil, the greatest source of tears, etc.,
11. You refuse to reject most other people and waste
their and your time because you lack the courage to do such
an “awful” thing to someone else.
You “resent” their wasting your time but refuse to reject
12. You are so busy spending too much time with people
you refuse to reject (or refuse to reject you ) to save “hurt”
feelings that you don’t have time to get on to the “special”
people you should be meeting.
There are several grades of rejection:
1. I can’t
stand you; leave me alone.
pretend to accept you to be nice, but I really don’t like you.
3. I like
you, but boy, have I got a lot of plans to straighten you out.
I accept you and like you just as you are.
(More next issue.)
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