Created By: Lacey on January 2, 2013 Last Edited By: Lacey on January 7, 2013
Troped

No means yes romance

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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.


Examples:

Film
  • 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.

Community Feedback Replies: 16
  • January 2, 2013
    Generality
    I think this falls under Stalking Is Love.
  • January 2, 2013
    Lacey
    The reason I think it's pretty different is this part of that article:

    "Instead of outright rejecting this guy's advances on the first go, the object of these advances isn't even irritated. She's completely dazzled and views them as romantic, completely overlooking the stalkerish implications of what he's doing."

    This trope would actually include the stalker being rejected repeatedly throughout the series.
  • January 2, 2013
    MiinU
    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.
  • January 2, 2013
    randomsurfer
    Related to No Means Yes (obviously, but not currently stated in the OP). Expect the Stock Phrase "Your mouth says no, but your eyes say yes."
  • January 3, 2013
    Lacey
    A few more examples:

    Examples

    • 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.
    • In the Ellen De Generes 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.
    • Wizardsof Waverly Place: Harper isn't at all put off by Justin's disinterest.
  • January 3, 2013
    lexicon
    The title and examples don't fit together. The title makes it sound like a rapist while the examples are about persistent romantics. There's actually an episode from Special Victims Unit, the first of the most recent full season, where a hotel maid accuses an Italian diplomat of raping her. He says in court that a man knows when a woman wants it because he can see it in her eyes.
  • January 3, 2013
    Jaqen
    Harry Potter Snape stalked Lily, so Harry named his son after Snape and that son became the next Dark Lord.
  • January 4, 2013
    MiinU

    Webcomics

  • January 4, 2013
    Waterlily
    "Harry Potter Snape stalked Lily, so Harry named his son after Snape and that son became the next Dark Lord."

    ?????? Is that a fanfic? Even the first part is generally true but there's a lot more to it than that.
  • January 4, 2013
    Lacey
    @lexicon: I used that working title because the trope is built on rejection being disregarded and sometimes used as encouragement. But you're right, it's probably not the best title considering the connotation of the phrase. Does anyone else have better ideas for it?
  • January 4, 2013
    MiinU
  • January 4, 2013
    Waterlily
    I think there are two different tropes here:

    A character who pursues his/her object of affection relentlessly in spite of constant rejection.

    1. The persistence eventually pays off. 2. It doesn't.

    There are very different implications of them.
  • January 4, 2013
    MiinU
    @Waterlily - How so? A lot of tropes work that way. Just because a single trope can result in two or more outcomes, doesn't mean that they're different tropes.

    Take Dogged Nice Guy for example. Just like this trope, it can have the same two outcomes you mentioned:

    • either their persistence pays, or it doesn't.

    Yet, they're both part of the same trope. All that matters for it to be valid is, the guy in question bends over backwards to win the affections of the girl who either ignores him, "friend zones" him, or seems unaware of his efforts to charm her.

    Tropes like: Childhood Friend Romance, Will They, or Won't They?, and Did They, or Didn't They? also allow for different outcomes, while remaining the same trope. So I fail to see why you feel it's a problem in this case.
  • January 5, 2013
    Lacey
    @Miin U: I'm for Rejection Affection.

    @Waterlily: I don't think it is a problem for there to be two different outcomes for the same trope, especially since there is already a precedence for it in other trope pages.
  • January 5, 2013
    captainpat
    this is Mad Love
  • January 5, 2013
    MiinU
    @captainpat - According to the description, and the Laconic, Mad Love is for when the admirer is either crazy to begin with, or goes insane due to constant rejection.

    Judging by the description and the examples, so far, that doesn't seem to be what this trope is about, since there's no mention of insanity. However, 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.
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/discussion.php?id=074ze8ajmatpqrhj68u5l2sq&trope=RejectionAffection