I Never Want to Hear “He’s Just Not That Into You” Ever Again

12 Sep

"Haha! I guess we don't really like each other after all!"

The most toxic phrase infiltrating the pop culture lexicon is “He’s just not that into you.” Coined by authors Greg Behrendt (a comedian who does not hold any sort of psychology degree) and 49-year-old never-married and eternally single writer Liz Tuccillo (not exactly an expert on relationships), the phrase is the title of their 2008 book He’s Just Not That Into You, also a terrible and poorly-written “romantic comedy” starring practically every star of the moment you could think of.

The book claims to offer advice to women on the dating world. Greg, who seems to think that every man is a type A personality who will jump at the chance to ask out any woman in a hundred-foot radius, is sadly mistaken. Not all men are cut from the same cloth, and it takes all kinds of people to make the world go round. I know from personal experience that not all men are like this. Most men, in fact, are shy, confused, and generally terrified of asking a woman out, never mind asking out a woman they really like.

The book and film offer these gems of advice for women: be completely passive when it comes to dating; your only job is to accept or deny dates as the offers come flooding in; NEVER EVER call or pursue a man in any way, shape, or form. In other words, become a subservient doormat with no wishes or desires of your own to fulfill. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with a woman asking a man out. I’ve asked out a few guys in my short lifetime, and guess what? I did not spontaneously combust into flames while doing so.

My main problem with the He’s Just Not That Into You philosophy is its assumption that all women want to be wooed and yet are not allowed to do any of the wooing. Why is it that HE is just not that into me? What if SHE is just not that into him? Can’t this idiotic philosophy be applied to both sexes? And what is wrong with giving a guy a call? I admit that I’ve questioned my attempts at wooing men, but why is that? We are taught that women are automatically the weaker sex; we are small forest creatures, if you will, waiting to be hunted down by the proverbial kings of the jungle. God forbid we ever pursue a man we actually like – we should just take the ones that force themselves into our lives.

I also have a major problem with thinking that everything must happen within a certain time frame for a relationship to develop. The idea that a guy must call you within three days to express his continued interest does not account for confusion, shyness, being busy with actual life commitments, and/or the possibility that you’re not the only thing he has to worry about. I’ve noticed that some of the strongest relationships start out as friendships. In these cases, both parties are interested in getting to know each other before jumping into anything serious. I think if you do not get to know someone at first, you could very likely end up with the very sort of people you need to avoid – stalkers, assholes, and perverts, who always seem overeager to make something happen.

The advice in He’s Just Not That Into You can be summed up as such: if you pretend to be a weak woman in need of a strong man, a strong man will find you and sweep you off your feet. Never mind if he’s not really someone you are attracted to or compatible with; if he’s calling you then he’s all you deserve. Also remember to play plenty of mind games, because men love a woman who comes off as an enigma – he won’t want to get to know you as a person anyway, so do your best to confuse the hell out of him.

My current situation in the “romantic realm,” if you will, involves a lot of confusion on my part. I am definitely attracted to and interested in one guy in particular; however, my current limbo-like state in life and romantic history makes me unsure of whether I want an actual relationship or some sort of fun fling. Hence, I am confused. I would not be surprised, considering what he’s told me about his romantic history, if he were confused as well. However, if he really is “just not that into me,” I suppose I will have to curl into a little ball with a pint of Ben and Jerry’s and cry until some asshole comes along to sweep me off my feet. But no thank you. I will continue to wait this one out and see what happens – I’m certainly in no hurry.

There is one more thing I would like to add: if you happen to encounter a guy who does everything without hesitancy and says all of the right things at the right time (much like the “ideal” men Greg describes in the book), chances are he’s a player who likes to fuck ’em and leave ’em. The type of man that Greg glorifies in his “book” is exactly the sort women need to avoid.

I suppose my point is that we are not all simple creatures who know what we want and/or need at any given moment. Dating is much more complicated than saying “he’s just not that into you.”

One Response to “I Never Want to Hear “He’s Just Not That Into You” Ever Again”

  1. Rob September 13, 2010 at 2:14 AM #

    You should write a book like this for men. Maybe we need advice on how to be doormats too.

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