I’m sure you’ve all heard about the book He’s Just Not That Into You. Or maybe you saw the movie. Or maybe you saw the Sex & The City episode where it all began. If you haven’t heard of the book, seen the movie, or watched the SATC episode, I need to first question your life choices. Next, I need to explain to you what this book is all about. Basically, HJNTIY (abbreviated because it’s annoyingly long and possibly poisonous) is a book written by a man and a woman about how most of the guys you like or are dating or are in a relationship with don’t really like you.
I read this book as soon as it was released. I watched the authors on Oprah. I was a believer. I was liberated by this book. It was like “Hey. It’s good to know up front that you don’t like me so I don’t waste any of my time fretting and shaving my legs. Don’t worry, you don’t have to say you don’t like me. This book already told me you don’t like me.” And believe it or not, that felt kind of good. For quite some time, I wasn’t concerned with whether or not guys were interested in me because HJNTIY told me they weren’t. If a guy wasn’t calling, texting, making plans with, or making out with me then he just wasn’t that into me. If a guy initially called, texted, made plans with, and made out with me and then failed to do one of those things, even missed one day, it meant he may have been into me but was no longer into me anymore. And I believed that because HJNTIY was on Oprah and therefore the gospel truth. Imagine me wasting all those years thinking guys liked me! How foolish. How childish. Finally, I was freed from that silliness and could now move forward knowing that almost every guy I met/liked would not be into me.
Great. So it made me feel good, until it made me feel like crap. This book had me convinced that none of the guys I liked were into me. Even the ones who probably were. If a guy I was dating didn’t call, text, make plans with, or make out with me, even missed one day, I was over it. I bailed out faster that Wall Street (BOOM economic humor). I didn’t give them a chance because I decided that they didn’t like me. Why did I decide that? Because HJNTIY told me to. Also, there may have been an element of self-preservation in there but I’m really more comfortable blaming outside sources.
For years, this book poisoned my mind against guys and against myself. Even though the book tells you time and time again that you’re beautiful, desirable, and utterly fantabulous it follows up all of those comments by telling you the guy you like doesn’t like you back so…..kind of a mixed message there. Don’t get me wrong, I really do think the heart of this book is in the right place, I just think it would have been much better to say “Hey. Don’t date assholes.” although, that would have been a much shorter book and Oprah probably wouldn’t approve. And sure, yes, if a guy never calls and always bails on you, he is probably not that into you, but if he misses one day then maybe don’t pull out the fried chicken and ice cream just yet, he’s probably still into you. Maybe don’t freak out and preemptively dump him.
And believe me, I totally sympathize with the get out before you get hurt instinct, hell, I would say that’s been the overall theme of my dating history, but some guys are totally worth ignoring that instinct for and conversely some aren’t. I don’t know, use your best judgement not some over-generalized and slightly insulting books. And hey, don’t date assholes.