“Start Barking”: 60 Genius Ways To Get Men To Stop Hitting On You

“Start Barking”: 60 Genius Ways To Get Men To Stop Hitting On You

Dating is an extremely complex dance. Building up the courage to make the first move is scary, but it’s only the beginning. Following that, we have to navigate the game of interpreting body language while beating around the bush with words. We try to ensure feelings are reciprocated, but when we're hit with the sting of rejection every now and then, the best reaction is accept it and move on. There are plenty of fish in the sea!

However, some people have a hard time accepting no for an answer, sparking creativity among women. 2 months ago, Reddit user weird-n-nerdy reached out to Ask Reddit and posed the question, “What are some effective ways to get a man to stop hitting on you?” The question received over 8,000 responses, including some genius ideas. We’ve gathered the best for you to read (and maybe add to your arsenal for the next time you’re confronted with a persistent man). And after you’ve finished this list, be sure to check out some other Bored Panda stories featuring men making questionable decisions here and here.

More info: Reddit

#1

My sister learned this from a friend and started doing this as well. She carried a couple of issues of Watchtower in her purse and when the guys started hitting on her, got a very earnest look on her face, pulled them out and started saying "Have you been saved? Have you accepted Jesus Christ as your personal savior?" It worked better than mace.

Image credits: JustinChristoph

Dating seems like it should be one of the most natural and intuitive human experiences. Follow your gut, trust your heart, and you’ll find your perfect match. We shouldn’t need to intellectualize dating; it should be instinctual. The internet, however, seems to be flooded with articles titled things like “The 10 Mistakes You’re Making When Dating”, “Essential Rules of Dating”, “How To Date Smarter”, etc. Not to mention the countless podcasts and blogs discussing the topic of dating as well.

While dating is something almost all of us do, often many times, it also seems to be shrouded in mystery. Becoming a dating coach or a matchmaker are actual career paths you could go down, and online dating (including apps) has become a multi-billion dollar industry. So with unlimited resources at our fingertips, why are we so bad at dating?

#2

I tend to attract the 55+ guys. As soon as I figure out their age I say "awww you're the same age as my dad!" That usually shuts them right down

Image credits: dani19bee

Mark Manson, New York Times bestselling author of The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck: A Counterintuitive Approach and Models: Attract Women Through Honesty, wrote a piece exploring the very nature of why dating is so perplexing for many of us. He first comments on the fact that dating advice often parallels advice of how to improve other skills, like playing an instrument for example. The “practice makes perfect” approach. While that tactic might make you a better piano player, it does not account for all the nuances involved in relationships. So Mark delves into the topic of our emotional maps. 

#3

Speak in a foreign language like you don't understand them. Thanks Dutch.

Image credits: chaos_elemental

#4

I loved what the woman said in the film double jeopardy, when a guy asked her out she said “yeah sure, I’ll just have to check with my parole officer because I murdered my husband”

Image credits: __V1510N__

One thing we have to consider when thinking about our dating habits is our emotional baggage. Even if we’re not conscious of it, our childhoods affect every part of our lives, including romance. “Whether it is a parent who didn’t hold us enough, who didn’t feed us regularly enough, a father who wasn’t around often, a mother who left us and moved away, being forced to move from school to school as a child and never having friends — all of these experiences leave their mark as a series of micro-traumas that shape and define us,” Mark says.

#5

Tell the story of how your last boyfriend broke up with you, and how it was crazy of him to freak out just because you stored some of his semen in your fridge “just in case”

Image credits: ChrisChrisBangBang

#6

I've seen girls use the "do you have a tampon?" with her friend as a guy approached before. Guy spun around faster than I thought poasible

Image credits: captcraigaroo

“The nature and depth of these traumas imprint themselves onto our unconscious and become the map of how we experience love, intimacy and sex throughout our lives.” Mark goes on to explain that while it’s possible to get along with many people or be attracted to everyone you go on a date with, it’s rare for someone to really captivate you and make you go so far as to fall in love. “Psychologists believe that romantic love occurs when our unconscious becomes exposed to someone who matches the archetype of parental love we experienced growing up, someone whose behavior matches our emotional map for intimacy,” Mark explains. “Our unconscious is always seeking to return to the unconditional nurturing we received as children, and to re-process and heal the traumas we suffered.”

#7

Send him a d*ck pic, say it’s yours or your bfs then ask him if he likes it.

Image credits: Red_rain9

#8

If he sends you an unsolicited d*ck pic, mint it as an NFT listing him as the artist and send him the purchase link, the only way for him to erase it from the blockchain is to buy it.

#9

"Sorry, I'm Mormon!" Followed my some absurd, made up reason like, "Yeah, my religion prohibits me from dating men who wear green." I'm actually Mormon and it works so damn well.

Image credits: Popular_War866

This is where the idea of our partners being our “other half” comes in. Sometimes lovers tell one another “you complete me”, and in a way, they do complete one part of them. Mark explains that these are the reasons falling in love makes us feel so giddy and like a child, but it’s also why dating can be so painful and challenging. “Our dating and sex lives are inextricably bound to our emotional needs, and when we get into potentially intimate or sexual situations, these experiences rub up against our prior traumas causing us anxiety, neuroticism, stress and pain.” Mark goes on to say the reason why rejection can be so hard to handle is because “that someone isn’t just rejecting you — instead, to your unconscious, you’re reliving every time your mother rejected you or turned down your need for affection.”

#10

"No thanks, I don't date humans. I'm strictly into Sarconians, They are our reptilian overlords."

Image credits: Eponarose

#11

Get really weird, really, really fast. Weird them out so much that they think you're a freak. Defo don't do it in a sexual way.

A friend of mine once did this to a guy who sat at our table on a night out. She went right down in conspiracy theorys, asking him why his shoes think he's orange, all sorts of really weird stuff, just to make him uncomfortable enough that he got up and left within a few minutes.
It was impressive, actually.

Image credits: 64gbBumFunCannon

#12

Ask if he's ready to be a daddy to the unborn baby you carrying

Why thank you for all the likes. This unfortunately happened to me at an embarrassing age of 17 and I was awkward and unsure about being a teen parent and this was how I hid my insecurity. My baby girl is almost 18 and I'm blessed for how she has changed me

Image credits: lbeemer86

Mark mentions that when we don’t confront our trauma head-on, we seek out ways to disassociate from our emotions. This can include objectifying sexual or romantic partners, preventing us from ever making an emotional connection. Viewing partners through a sexist lens and projecting personal insecurities onto them is another common unhealthy coping mechanism. Some people resort to using manipulation and games while dating, to withhold their emotional maps and vulnerability. Lastly, Mark mentions that some people overuse humor and sarcasm to avoid any meaningful conversations, and others simply turn to strip clubs or pornography to evade human interaction altogether. Mark notes that, generally, “the more resentment one is harboring, the more one objectifies others”.

He does note though, that dating expectations are different for men and women, as gender norms subsist in our society. “There’s a lot of social pressure on men, particularly straight men, to ignore their emotions, particularly ‘weak’ emotions such as a need for intimacy and love. It’s more socially acceptable for men to objectify their sex lives and boast about it.”

#13

Being fat and over the age of 35 worked for me.

#14

Ask for money. Works 10/10

Image credits: abalien

#15

Tell him you're only interested in tall men with high paying jobs. You want to be a mom ASAP and don't want to work.

Demand to see his DL first so you know where to send court documents for child support.

Image credits: VStarRoman

Luckily, we are not all doomed to a life of terrible dating experiences. Healthy, happy relationships do exist, so Mark shares tips on how we can work towards a successful love life. First, he notes that our emotional baggage will never fully disappear, but the goal is to replace unhealthy feelings and anxieties with “higher order” behaviors and feelings. It takes practice, but we can develop healthy responses to situations that would typically trigger us. Along the same lines, we can over time desensitize ourselves to emotional triggers.

“You must overlay old emotional habits of fear and anxiety with healthier ones like excitement and assertiveness.” Lastly, Mark recommends being honest about emotional needs from the onset of a relationship. “For instance, I’ve always had a fear of commitment and needed a woman who was comfortable giving me space and some freedom,” Mark notes. “Not only do I openly share this with women I get involved with now, but I actively screen for women with these traits.” This sets the groundwork for a healthy partnership. “The practice of being upfront about your desires and flaws will naturally screen for those who best suit you and connect with you.”

#16

Ask him if he could get you his beat friends phone number because he’s cute

#17

Mention the number of psych medications your on

Image credits: iguessthisiscool

#18

Tell him you’re dying to have kids.

While some men have a hard time taking no for an answer, many women have a hard time being upfront about the rejection as well. A quick Google search yields countless articles about “How to Say No Politely To a Man Who Asks You Out” and “Guy-Approved Ways to Turn Down a Date Without Hurting His Feelings”. Of course, I’m not advocating for being cruel or making personal digs. But why can’t we just say “no thanks, I'm not interested”? Women are taught to be sensitive to (and responsible for) others’ feelings all the time, even when men push past boundaries and continue to hit on us after being turned down. Some women use excuses like “sorry, I already have a boyfriend” or "I'm married" that allow the man to feel like it had nothing to do with him. But the fact is, rejecting a man can be scary when you don't know how he will react.

#19

Bark at him!

#20

Fart extremely loudly in front of them and don’t acknowledge it

Image credits: Caramel_Cappucino

#21

Look at calender on your phone, think hard jpg ...whisper "ovulating..2 days plus... hardthinkjpg"...."you free tonight? "

In 2019, actress Jameela Jamil opened up on Twitter about the dangerous situations women can find themselves in after rejecting men. "Was out at the shops with my friend,” she wrote. “Man ogles me. Man then approaches me to give me his number. I explain I have a boyfriend but thank him for the offer. Man then threatens my career, saying I better remember that I rejected him. And then shouts at me that I’m low class …” This was not even the only story Jamil had to share of a frightening post-rejection response. "I once said no thank you to a man when I was 19 and didn’t have an excuse... and he punched me in the face. After that, whether or not I have a boyfriend, I say I do. Being a woman is truly, constantly scary. It’s like existing on thin ice." After Jamil shared her personal experiences, countless other women shared similar encounters. Unfortunately, it can sometimes be safer for women to come up with excuses or do something to make the man no longer interested.

#22

you could talk about how the election was stolen but it might backfire

#23

Back in the 90’s I’d use my beeper/pager and make believe it was a voice box and I’d speak like I was using a voice box (I’m good at mimicking sounds). Worked every time.

Image credits: Hippydippy420

#24

“Sorry, I’m not interested, I’m a mother”, then showing (many!) pictures of my kids made miracles.

Image credits: quietdiablita

Much more extreme and terrifying examples of men reacting violently to rejection are Elliot Rodger and Alek Minassian. Rodger famously killed six people and injured thirteen others in 2014, motivated by "a desire to punish women for rejecting him and to punish sexually active men for living a better life than him". Minassian had a similar motive when he killed 10 people in 2018 "by ploughing a van into pedestrians in Toronto". Of course, anyone who can commit atrocities like these is dealing with some sort of mental illness, but we can never know for sure what mental state others are in when we reject them.

#25

Ask if he has heard the good news of our lord and savior

Image credits: Catllector

#26

Describe the procedure for bull castration in vivid detail. Thanks Animal Science degree.

Image credits: chaos_elemental

#27

A guy was straight up hitting on my girlfriend when I was right there and he wouldn't stop when she asked so I just started hitting on him. "Nice ass buddy!", "Can I get you're number and send you some lewd pics". He got super pussed and walked away.

Resorting to outlandish excuses when turning men down may be effective, but let’s not forget why women feel the need to do that in the first place. Overly persistent men should respect women enough to just take no for an answer. Remember that everyone experiences rejection at some point, and the best way to deal with it is to shrug it off and keep looking forward.

Be sure to upvote your favorite tactics in dealing with pushy men, and let us know in the comments what your best line is when you need to turn someone down!

#28

One time all it took was the guy seeing my Star Wars tattoo. That was amazing for me.

Image credits: Barfignugen

#29

Actual advice: never give a reason. Any reason is an invitation to negotiation for some people. It also gives them a sense that maybe they have an entitlement that's being blocked by 'reason.'

All the following work, depending on how nice you want to be, none give a reason.

'No,' 'not interested,' 'thank you, but no,' 'how nice, but not thank you,' 'I'm flattered, but no.'

If someone says 'what not?' Just repeat that you're not interested but move from polite to simple no. If someone persists past that simple no, then consider them a danger.

#30

Ask him to buy into your MLM scheme

Image credits: virgilhall

#31

"I have to be back at prison before morning roll call."'

#32

Once a man was trying hitting on me in a bus, I was feeling very bloated and gassy..and burped aloud right in his face ,like a huge grandma burp..the look on his face was priceless, didn't bother me again

#33

Depends on where it is happening.

In a club, I find having a male friend tell them to stop is one way. Reporting the harassment to management gets them thrown out. Or I have had to go up to a random stranger and ask him to act like I am with him.

At work, reporting it to management is one way. I do that when it is out of line. I have also just verbally insulted the person. Or a few extremely firm no’s.

Out and about? That’s tricky. I took MMA classes and karate. I wear a bracelet that will alert family and 911 if I touch a certain button. And I carry a cat face on my key ring. Men see that and know what it is. They either leave me alone or try to point out it is illegal. Personally, I’d rather be judged by 12 than carried by 6.

And I’ve also lied and said I was seeing someone and the relationship is serious.

I hope you figure a safe way to deal with the attention. Because age and weight have not made a difference for me. I’m over 50 and a little curvier but still get hit on.

I do want to stress charm and trying to tactfully remove yourself from the situation. Sad but men don’t take rejection well.

#34

Tell him he smells

"Hey sorry but you have kinda bad BO right now"

#35

According to American-born Muslim women, wearing a hijab works really well.

Image credits: Tall_Mickey

#36

Headphones, don't smile, hood on, eyes down. Big shapeless jacket. Death glare at who ever still somehow thinks your interested in chatting/flirting with a stanger in public. I've been told by a random stranger on the bus that I'm not very approachable, after he yanked my headphones out and tried to force me to talk to him. I smiled, put my headphones back in and said "thanks, that's the whole point!!" The lady behind me laughed. The Guy standing by the door said "dude stop" I spent the rest of my 45 min bus journey in blissful peace and quiet. The buss was full of people, middle of the day and only 2 people seemed to notice what happened.

#37

If you’re looking for a serious answer, 1) Whatever you do, don’t smile. 2) One word answers and complete silence to anything that doesn’t require a direct answer. 3) Keep looking in the opposite direction while he’s trying to engage you. 4) Walk away.

#38

With as deep (and masculine) a voice as you can manage, say "Look dude, I'm not interested"

#39

Wearing a mask has really cut down on my appeal to older conservative men, which has been great

#40

Talk about other guys

#41

"Do you know where the bathroom is? I'm gonna barf...."

#42

Look them in the eye levelly for 3 seconds, then just say "pass" with entitlement, disgust, and dismissiveness.

#43

Mention your spouse/partner, real or imaginary, repeatedly in conversations. This has usually worked for me in the past (I do have a real spouse).

#44

I’ve found the Charlize Theron queen walk stops them before they start hitting on you

#45

Ask to see their phone. No, demand to see their phone. Demand access to their texts. Scroll until you find a woman’s name. Ask “who the f*ck is this b*tch? You can’t talk to any other females if you’re gonna be with me.” Go to their Instagram profile, find the attractive women that they’ve followed. “You can’t look at any other pretty b*tches if you’re gonna be with me!”

Image credits: mrmoe198

#46

Ugh I get honked at like everyday when I go for runs, or men will LITERALLY slow down their cars and roll their windows down to look at me. I just make a disgusted face and ignore them.

If someone is being really persistent, honestly, don’t be nice- just be a b*tch. Be firm, sharp, and cold- it sounds harsh but it works.

#47

There's a user on tiktok who shares a method called "Baby Runs for President", where you basically ask them very blunt questions with the just shy of rude honesty that a toddler uses. You just keep asking stuff like "what do you do?" "what's that?" "oh really? What's that?" until the person gives up and leaves.

#48

Dinosaur noises

#49

Offer to show your collection of boogers and toenails.

#50

Tell him you have mouth herpes and will give it if prompted.

#51

"I have a boyfriend/married." -"He's not here."

"I'm a lesbian." -"Prove it, kiss this random girl in front me."

''I'm not interested." -"Playing hard to get?"

"I don't believe in premarital sex." -"A blow job is fine."

Literally all lines I've tried, the only way I can say that somewhat works is to be a complete b*tch, and even then some guys act like you're flirting.

#52

For a serious answer straight up ask him what he wants, and when he tells you he wants to date you/ sleep with you tell him you’re not interested, have no desire to be involved with him and he should stop his attempts as your opinions do not change under any type of pressure. Be dead on and honest and don’t shy away from being brutally direct. No avoidance or softening your words of any kind, that gets interpreted as wiggle room. It’s not rocket science, to get a person to do what you want then to do you just directly tell them with actual weight behind your words.

#53

Deliver sweet love to their chest with the business end of a broad sword

#54

Draw on those fake eyebrows that some women (typically older) do.

Snort when you laugh.

#55

Show him my cat's Instagram account. She has over 400 followers, mostly other international felines.

#56

Just start talking non-stop about your day and your friends and your emotions, lots of good ideas here

#57

Tell him he reminds you of your little ugly brother.

#58

"THAT'S MY PURSE! I DON'T KNOW YOU!"

Followed by a swift kick

#59

Scratch your groin and ask his advice for jock itch

#60

Tell him you are vegan!

#61

I used this when I saw guys creepingly staring at me on the subway or something like that. Scratching your hair like you got lice, coughing like there’s no tomorrow (with Corona even more of a thing) and picking your nose. It worked. I saw the lice thing in the movie Schindlers list and went from there.

#62

I had a female friend who had a female coworker confess to being in love with her. My friend quietly leaned over and threw up on the co-worker's shoes. Admittedly not the most tactful approach.

#63

Just stare even if they look away stare into their soul
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