RejectionAffection No means yes romance YKTTW Discussion

No means yes romance
Better Name
(permanent link) added: 2013-01-02 15:21:47 sponsor: Lacey (last reply: 2013-01-07 15:31:55)

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“You are too hasty, sir,” she cried. “You forget that I have made no answer. Let me do it without further loss of time. Accept my thanks for the compliment you are paying me. I am very sensible of the honour of your proposals, but it is impossible for me to do otherwise than to decline them.”

“I am not now to learn,” replied Mr. Collins, with a formal wave of the hand, “that it is usual with young ladies to reject the addresses of the man whom they secretly mean to accept, when he first applies for their favour; and that sometimes the refusal is repeated a second, or even a third time. I am therefore by no means discouraged by what you have just said, and shall hope to lead you to the altar ere long.”
--Elizabeth Bennett and Mr. Collins, Pride and Prejudice

Boy meets girl. Boy falls for girl. Girl rejects boy. And rejects him. And rejects him. Does boy take the hint? Nope.

This trope happens when a male or female character refuses to take any hints or outright rejections in their pursuit of the object of their affection. The suitors are often very vocal and aggressive in their courtship despite the lack of progress or even outright disgust exhibited by the recipient of their love. As creepy as it sounds, this is often played for comedy or even shown as romantic.

Mad Love could become the result of this trope, if the admirer's advances are rejected both often and strongly enough; especially if they refuse to take "no" for an answer.

Related to No Means Yes. Expect the Stock Phrase "Your mouth says no, but your eyes say yes."

Also related to Abhorrent Admirer for the one being hit on, and Hopeless Suitor for the one doing the hitting. It may become a case of Dogged Nice Guy (or girl), depending on whether the reader/audience is meant to sympathize with them.


  • In the Ellen DeGeneres film, Mr. Wrong, Martha's abhorrentadmirer Whitman refuses to accept her outright rejects and continues insisting they are meant to be... until she kills him.
  • The Notebook: Allie only falls in love with Noah after rejecting him repeatedly only for him to persist.

Live-Action TV
  • Downton Abbey: Edith pursues her neighbor Sir Anthony Strallan aggressively even though her parents AND Strallan are against the match. She finally gets the hint when he leaves her at the alter.
  • Family Matters: Steve Urkel spends the entire run of this sitcom aggressively trying to win Laura's affections even though she is repulsed by him. His perseverance pays off in the end.
  • Saved by the Bell: Even though Lisa is extremely vocal in her lack of interest in Screech, he obliviously insists they are meant to be.
  • Step by Step: Dana is the continuous subject of the unwanted attentions of her stepfather's nephew Cody.
  • The Vampire Diaries: Katherine is deeply in love with Stefan who makes it clear he wants nothing to do with her. That doesn't stop Katherine from insisting she will have him again.
    • Klaus is also undeterred by Caroline's abhorrence for him.
  • Wizardsof Waverly Place: Harper isn't at all put off by Justin's disinterest.

Web Comics

Western Animation
  • Hey Arnold!!: While Helga is busy being a Stalker with a Crush to Arnold, Brainy is doing the same to Helga, but a lot more openly. No matter how many times she hits him, he persists.

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