by james tarring cordrey

Men fear rejection.

We hate getting shot down by a girl. We hate getting told ‘no’ by just about anybody. And we hate getting into situations in which it is entirely obvious — or even just our strong perception — that we don’t have what it takes.

Our need to know that we have the right stuff starts early.

As boys we imagined ourselves as heroes of various types. Some grabbed the football and imagined themselves leading the team down the field with time running out to win the Super Bowl.  Some pretended they were hitting a grand slam to win the World Series with the count 3-2 and two out in the bottom of the 9th in Game 7 as the team trailed by 3 runs. Yet others took  a stick, or a plastic weapon of some kind, and created scenarios in which they were soldiers or knights or Jedi vanquishing evil and securing life and freedom for the world.

As we reach manhood physically, if we are emotionally still boys, we have to find a way to fake it. This is where passivity comes in.  We act ‘cool’ and detached as a way of masking our fear of failure and rejection.  We know we are supposed to act, but since we have not actually learned how to take action, we have to create a façade of being self-assured and confident.

The best way to look self-assured is to be so casual about everything that we give the perception that nothing rattles us.  We use passivity as a rouse to give the impression we have everything under control.

The fear of rejection is huge for men because when we are turned down — even when done graciously by someone who legitimately cares about us — we feel naked. We feel exposed as a fraud. The rejection is proof positive that we don’t have what it takes, we say to ourselves.

So passivity is rampant among men these days because we fear rejection, especially in our relationships with women.  Asking a woman on a date opens us up to the possibility of very serious rejection.  If she turns me down, i will feel absolutely exposed as lacking in the one aspect of life that matters so deeply: the ability to win the beauty. The ability to get the girl.

And we desperately want to win the beauty. We ache for it.

So our fear of rejection leads us right to porn and masturbation involving sexual fantasies.

Rejection? Not here.

Countless ‘women’ say ‘yes’ to my advances. Countless scenarios play out in which i have what it takes.

And the beauty? My ache for it is met as i ‘win’ her — and many others — every time.

This is lie we are more than happy to believe.

This reality goes for married men as well as single men. The fear of rejection still rears its ugly head in marriage.  Our wives can shoot us down or criticize us or express their disappointment in us and something inside our souls starts thinking about finding a ‘woman’ who will affirm us 100 percent. And then, after a while, there’s no reason to initiate sex as a husband because there’s an endless supply of porn to look at which will take care of that ache.

But it really doesn’t take care of the ache. This is one reason why porn always fails.

As men we must see that we are more crippled by the Fear of rejection than we are by rejection itself. Hearing someone say ‘no’ to us — especially in a dating or marital situation — is not mortal. We will live to fight another day, as the saying goes. Hearing ‘no’ but then pressing on anyway builds a strength in us as men that makes us true.

Running to porn out of a fear of rejection makes us pale imitations of men.

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