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How To Tell Someone You’re Not Interested: 7 Best Ways + Examples

How To Tell Someone You’re Not Interested: 7 Best Ways + Examples

They are double-texting you (or triple-texting you), they somehow “magically” appear at the same places as you, and all you can think of is: How do you tell someone you’re not interested?

Perhaps you never saw them in your life (I mean in real life) and they are virtually obsessing over you, but you don’t want to enter ‘the drama queen mode’ and block them or say something inappropriate.

Or, maybe you went on a few dates with them and now you’ve realized that you’re actually not interested in proceeding with this bound-to-fail romance.

Whatever the reason is, one thing is for sure: You want to let them know that at this point in your life (and probably in the future), you have no interest in, well, anything with them, right?

But wait, why don’t you just tell them openly and honestly that you’re not interested in hanging out with them; that you want to cut off communication and keep on living your best life without them in it?

Because ghosting is for cowards, and you want to find a respectful way to express your disinterest. Or, because you’re not really sure whether you’re interested or not in the first place.

Don’t worry, we’ll figure it out together.

Brace yourself because we’ve got some important questions to answer, such as: How do you know when you’re not interested in someone? Or, should you tell someone that you’re not interested? We’ll also go through the best ways to do it (with examples).

How Do You Know When You’re Not Interested In Someone?

Most people just know when they don’t have a romantic interest in someone and are not even considering a romantic relationship with that one person. Lucky me because I’m not most people.

Even when I’m 100% sure that I don’t want to keep dating that one person, I still question my decision and rethink it twice so I don’t end up regretting it.

I guess I never expect others to give me second chances, so I’m careful about making choices.

I call it the evaluation process. Whenever I’m not quite sure (or I want to be 101% sure) that I’m TOTALLY not interested romantically in someone, I ask myself the following questions, and if the answer is NO to all of them, then I know where I stand:

You treat them like an option

You send them mixed signals. You postpone texting them back (or avoid it completely). They’re not on your priority list.

Are you doing any of that? Well, if you’re not interested in them, then you probably are doing some of these (or all of these) things.

You treat them like an option because you don’t care about their feelings, but you also don’t want to give them false hope, right?

You’re not excited when they text you

We all know the thrill of excitement when the person we like texts us. It’s an entire symphony of emotions mixed with the anticipation and the urge to impress them with our texting skills.

If you’re not experiencing any of this when they text you, then you’re definitely not interested in them. Period.

You don’t feel the urge to spend time with them

You’re not interested in a second date with them. You’re not interested in phone calls with them, and you don’t want to see them face-to-face. Actually, you’re not interested in anything with them, right?

If the answer is yes, that’s the biggest indication of total disinterest.

Let’s be honest. When you fall for someone, you can’t help yourself but contemplate spending every second with them (until you marry them, of course). No insult intended to married couples out there, okay?

You seldom or never think about them (unless when you’re reading their texts)

You never check their social media profiles, and they’re seldom or never on your mind no matter what you’re doing at the moment. Well, you know what this means.

It means that you’re a totally busy person and you have no time to think about those who are probably rotting to see you. ?‍♀️ This was supposed to be funny, but it kind of turned out wrong. Well, now you know that you’re supposed to laugh at it.

So, this means that they’re not on your mind because you aren’t into them. Simple, indeed.

You don’t see yourself in a long-term relationship with them

Perhaps you think that they’re a great person, but you know you’re not a good match. The only “relationship” you would consider having with them is the famous friend zone.

But, you don’t want to hurt that person’s feelings by telling them, Sorry, you’ve been friendzoned“, because you’re not that type of person. You want to end things the right way.

You like someone else

Is that someone else on your mind 24/7? Well, if you already like someone else, then there’s no need to question your disinterest in the other person.

Or, maybe you could be into more people at once because we human beings have seriously evolved emotionally. I won’t confuse you any further. You, yourself, know the right answer to this question.

Should You Tell Someone You’re Not Interested?

Of course, not. You should let them keep texting you and keep playing with their feelings and laughing at their misery while eating ice cream. JOKING!

I’ll ask you something else: Why shouldn’t you tell someone you’re not interested? If you can give me one valid reason, I’ll reconsider what I’m about to write next.

Okay. The main reason why you should tell someone that you’re not on the same page is that hurting someone else’s feelings is not fun. Deciding to ghost someone is also not fun at all.

There are plenty of polite ways to express your disinterest, so why complicate things or choose some rude methods to do so?

You should tell someone you’re not interested because you owe it to both yourself and them. That’s the only way you keep living your life without feeling guilty (if you have a sensitive consciousness like myself), and it’s the only way for them to move on.

Imagine spending tons of time fantasizing about the object of your affection, and neglecting your own life only to live in an illusion.

Imagine waking up every day in hope that the other person will eventually admit that they like you, and not until that happens will you accept their mixed signals.

Now, imagine how lucky you are because you’re not in their shoes. So, the least you can do is end things in a respectful way without hurting their feelings, and here’s how you’ll do it.

7 Respectful Ways To Tell Someone You’re Not Interested

From sending an honest text to doing it in person, here are some ways in which you can express your disinterest, and also things you should pay attention to when doing it:

Consider the best method to let them know

Have you been dating for some time now, or you’ve just been on a first date? Do you feel like this is a mini break-up or perhaps things are not that serious between you?

If you met someone on a dating app or on social media, and you weren’t spending time in person, then things should be easy for you (Cheers to online dating).

You can simply send them an honest text and explain that you’re not interested in further hanging out with them.

If you’ve gone out a couple of times, then you should consider other methods (face-to-face or a phone call). If you’re overly anxious about doing it in person, then calling them is a better option perhaps for both of you so that you avoid any awkward situations.

Send an honest text

Because ghosting is not an option!

Regardless of how many times they texted you so far (and how many times you haven’t responded), choose to do the right thing and send them an honest text message that will let them know how you feel about all this.

I’m not telling you that you should send one of those legit break-up texts if things weren’t that serious between you. Just write what’s on your soul.

If it’s easier for you, pretend that they are your friend and you have to tell them something they might not like. After that, you can expect anything to happen depending on the level of their attachment to you.

They might choose to block you or simply text you that they understand. Whatever happens, know that you’ve done the right thing and there’s nothing you should worry about.

Do it face-to-face

If you’ve been on a couple of dates so far and you actually felt like there could be something more between you, but for some reason, you become disinterested in pursuing the ongoing romance, a face-to-face conversation should suffice.

I know what you think: But, what if they slap me in the face after I tell them that? What if they start crying in public because of what I just said to them? What if?

Thinking about too many What ifs is a surefire way to boost your stress levels (I’m speaking in a negative connotation if you haven’t noticed).

If you fear that things could become awkward if you decide to tell them that in person, then just ask them to go for a walk, and avoid sitting in public places.

Also, if you simply can’t find the courage to do it face-to-face, then send them a text message. That should be your plan B.

Keep the conversation short

Regardless if you’re about to see them in person or send them a text, keep in mind that you shouldn’t prolong the conversation. Now is definitely not a time to analyze the whole situation between you or to start some random topics.

It’s always best to keep the conversation short because it’s less painful for the both of you. I don’t know about you, but I’m a straightforward kind of person.

I don’t like when someone starts beating around the bush or trying to minimize the seriousness of a situation.

Keep in mind the following: If that guy or girl likes you A LOT, then for them, this is literally going to be the end of the world. But, luckily, it’s nothing that a couple of drinks, 10 tons of ice cream, and 120 sleepless nights can’t cure.

I’m aware of the fact that now is not the time to be sarcastic, but I’m trying to let you know that straightforwardness will be the best option because disappointment and pain are inevitable.

Don’t sugar coat it

And, please, don’t start the conversation with something like: “Look, you’re a nice guy/nice girl and there’s nothing wrong with you. You’re one of the coolest people I’ve ever met, BUT…”

Seriously? Why would anyone waste their time on praising the other person only to “put a bullet in their heart” a few seconds later?

There’s no need for you to boost their confidence because either way, they will analyze and overthink things after you tell them. Okay, you can say something like: “You’re a great person…” but don’t go into detail.

It’s best to not give them plenty of material for overthinking because they might draw the wrong conclusion from that.

Or, you can simply buy them a cake! Can you believe that I recently stumbled across dating advice that suggests baking or buying a cake that says “Not interested”? It even suggests “throwing a card in for added flare.”

I don’t know what’s wrong with people or if it’s just me and my mindset is outdated. Why would someone go through the trouble of buying a cake only to tell the person they’re not interested in them in the first place? ??

Don’t force a friendship

Do you think being friends after dating is a good idea? Perhaps, for you, it is, but is it really for them?

Recently, I’ve been on a couple of dates with a guy and all of a sudden I realized that I’m not interested in anything serious with him at the moment.

I didn’t know how to tell him that because I was aware of the fact that he was crazy about me (He told me that face-to-face).

Truth be told, I saw him more as a potential friend than a lover, so by ending things with him, I would lose both. I spent a few days thinking about all that, and I was determined to find the best solution for both.

When I mentioned to him something about staying friends, he instantly expressed annoyance about it. He couldn’t stay friends with me because he had feelings for me, and it would have been torture.

I understood him immediately, and didn’t contradict a single word because I knew that I would feel the same way about it if I was in his shoes.

The bottom line is, don’t force a friendship with them if they don’t suggest it themselves. Still, think twice about it in order to avoid any potential complication in the future.

Tell the truth and stick to it

Here’s the most important part of all. Once you tell them the truth, DON’T change your mind a week/month/ year later. This happened to me, and I can tell you how painful it is to experience it.

After half a year, a guy told me: “I wasn’t ready for a long-distance relationship back then, so I told you I wasn’t interested. I actually liked you, but I wasn’t ready for anything serious then.”


Okay, let’s say that this is true (even though I’m a skeptical person). Do you really think I would be interested in dating him again after he told me that he wasn’t interested? Dude, I moved on a long time ago.

So, do yourself a favor: tell the truth and stick to it. Don’t question your decision, and don’t assume they were waiting for you all this time to appear in their life out of nowhere.

Of course, there are exceptions because every situation is unique, but generally, it’s best to just leave them be and forget about them. Tell them you just aren’t interested in them anymore, and allow them to digest it and recover from it.

The only thing they should keep in mind is the following: Never date someone who isn’t sure about you. That’s the only wisdom they need to protect themselves from being disappointed.

How To Tell Someone You’re Not Interested: EXAMPLES

Finally! How do you tell someone you’re not interested in them? Wait, are there some rules that you should follow when it comes to finding the right words and expressing yourself?

Well, the only rule you should follow is: Don’t overdo it, and stick to the point.

The more you’re explaining yourself, the less valid your words are (whether it is written or spoken). That’s one of the lessons I’ve learned the hard way as per usual.

To save you from unnecessary overthinking, here are a few examples of how to tell someone you’re not interested:

  • “I want you to know that I enjoyed our dates, but I want to be upfront with you. I don’t feel we’re compatible for the long term.”
  • “You’re a great person, but I can’t pretend that we’re compatible when we aren‘t. I don’t feel like we have a connection, and I don’t want to waste any more of your time. You deserve to find someone special with whom you’ll be a great match.”
  • “I’m sorry, but I’m not ready for anything serious at this time. You don’t deserve to be in a one-sided relationship. You deserve someone who can be there for you.”
  • “I really enjoyed our time spent together, but I don’t see how this could work in the long run. It’s evident that our opinions and goals collide, so it wouldn’t be fair to force anything. We can spend that time meeting others who might be a better match for us.”
  • “Hi, I’m sorry for not texting you back, but I didn’t find time for that. As you can see, my life has been busy lately, and I’m not trying to lead you on. We can stay friends if you want to, but I’m afraid I can’t be anything more than that to you at the moment.”
  • “I had a great time with you, but I want you to know that I’m not interested in anything serious at the moment. I hope you’ll understand.”
  • “Since I don’t want to lead you on, it’s best to tell you upfront that I’m not getting the relationship vibe.”
  • “I’ll be honest with you. I don’t want to force something that simply isn’t there. We can stay friends if you want to, but a relationship is not an option.”
  • “I’m sorry for disappointing you, but I think it’s best for us to stop seeing each other because I don’t want to lead you on. I hope you find your special someone.”

How To Tell Someone You’re Not Interested After A Few Dates?

The procedure is basically the same as in the above examples. Just pay attention to one thing, and that is: Don’t give them false hope.

Don’t say something like: Maybe we’ll have more luck in the future. If you’re not interested, you’re not. Period.

Don’t sugar coat it, and don’t feel like you’re doing something bad when you actually aren‘t. You’re just being honest about how you feel at the moment and that’s all that matters.

Of course, you can tell them that you enjoyed the time you spent together (so that you don’t sound like a completely heartless person), but continuing to see them is not an option because you don’t want to lead them on.

How Do You Tell Someone You’re Not Interested After Leading Them On?

Oh, boy. If you’ve led them on, then you know you messed it up badly, and now you have to deal with that baggage. Since I’m hopelessly optimistic, I’ll only say that it could’ve been worse.

You could have continued leading them on without even thinking about telling them you’re not interested. So, don’t think about what happened, but focus on what you can do now to make things right (at least partially).

You can tell them something like:

“Hey, I know I messed it up and played with your feelings, but I’m not that kind of person and I want to do the right thing. So, I’m telling you openly and honestly that I’m not interested in seeing you any longer because you deserve someone who will genuinely care about you. I’m sorry, and I hope you’ll forgive me.”

Well, that sounds great to me, at least (because I wrote it, obviously).

Don’t Overthink!

Perhaps the best advice of all when it comes to mastering the art of how to tell someone you’re not interested is the following: “Don’t overthink things because if you do, you might do something stupid.”

I applied this advice to every aspect of my life, and I’m satisfied with how things are progressing. Above, you have plenty of examples that you can modify to your heart’s content until it sounds just right.

Find the right words, and just do it. The more you prolong it, the more painful it will be (especially for them).

Ladies, I have something for you that will save you trouble now and in the future when you’re not really sure whether you like the guy or not: Do I Like Him? 24 Questions To Know For Sure. Be honest with yourself when answering these questions and you’ll know what to do next.