How to let a guy down easy. It’s not easy! Not at all.
I have planned to be more out-going here in Ghana. I’m learning now that the perils of being sociable and open is that guys become comfortable asking me out. I have no problems with that. In fact I have enjoyed a couple of outings that have been enjoyable. Though the “I’m single” sign is on I’m pretty sure I didn’t activate the “I’m seeking my life-long partner this very second” sign as well. Jeez!
So really, I could have chosen not to go down that road like I have many times before. You know, it takes years of practice to become an ice queen. But I have decided it is a new year, a new country, a relaxed atmosphere, so why not be free? Now, I’m paying dearly for it.
The problem comes when a guy thinks since it was so easy for him to get me to go out with him that I must like him. No, I was just being agreeable. I should have seen it coming. It’s instinct after all and we women have it. You know what I’m talking about. The ability to tell when a guy is interested. In primary school it was the boy who pulled our hair or tried to trip us up. Sometimes, he would say nasty things about us to his friends like “she has cooties“! In our teenage years, he would talk loudly or do antics when we passed him and his friends by. Or he would tease us badly in front of others but when alone with us he acted very shy and mumbled his words. Unfortunately, some men do not grow out of that stage.
To their credit, Ghanaians are not known as the “friendliest people on Earth” for nothing. I am being taken care of well by both ladies and guys. Friends and family of friends and family. Former classmates and schoolmates I don’t even remember. Contacts from simple acquaintances. All looking out for me. I’m not complaining. I’m blessed.
But as I said, I should have known when an invite was not a “oh, you are new here, let me show you around” but rather a “I can’t believe how lucky I am for God to have brought you into my life, you are so beautiful, your smile shines up my world, let me take you out to try to wow you so you will agree to be my wife“.
Hmmmm! Damn my dimpled smile! Maybe I should go back to my “mean-mug” resting face.
The red flags I did not pick up on time
- praising me for no good reason
- trying his very best to hold an intelligent conversation…and boring me to death in the process
- his friends thinking I’m out-of-bounds to them (and they say only women gossip)
My situation is particularly difficult as the guy has decided to be deaf. When I say “I’ve been busy concentrating on my books so I have not dated much“, he hears “but now that I’m with you, I am ready to ditch my books“. I say, “I’m not looking for a boyfriend“, he hears, “I have waited for you and only you to sweep me of my feet“. I say, “I’m not ready to get married nor have children” he hears “I wasn’t thinking of marriage until I met you and now I want to have all 10 of your children“. And so it goes. Before long, he has turned me into a straight out liar professing that my life-long ambition is to be a spinster dedicated to my career and that in fact not only do I hate children, I have no sexual drive, and didn’t know that there was such a thing as cooking or ironing! Ah, what troubled webs I’m forced to weave!
No, it’s not easy letting a guy down
It’s particularly hard when the guy is already a friend and you want him to stay so. Worse if he seems to think that you sub-consciously have an undying love for him and it is his mission to uncover this love that you are oblivious to. But I digress. That is not the case here. This is no friend just a new acquaintance trying very hard to woo me.
Since there is no history between the two of us I have nothing to lose so I have been quite frank. “I AM NOT INTERESTED IN YOU!” I had to say eventually. But, I have been told in the past that my words can sting and apparently guys have feelings too! Who knew? So I bit my tongue and stifled the “You are not attractive to me and actually I think you are too-known and absolutely boring – I would rather watch my hair grow” that was about to follow.
Would you believe this direct approach has made him more persistent. He just thinks I’m playing a game. I’ve opened the floodgates and the text messages are just pouring in reminding me that fate has brought us together! How did I get myself into this? Lessons from Ghanaian courtship. I will be sure not to repeat these mistakes.