Dear Harlan: I’m in my mid-20s and have been friends with a guy for a couple of years. We always have been very honest with each other. He recently has started to express feelings for me. I’m not interested in pursuing a sexual relationship with him. How do I politely tell my friend who wants to have sex with me that I’m not interested? Do you have any personal experiences? – No Benefits
Dear No Benefits: I didn’t point-blank ask for sex. I’m a gentleman. I asked for a date first, then sex (just kidding). Most friends said, “No.” (not kidding). I was OK with it because I can handle rejection. I give women permission to not want me. Meaning, when a woman rejects me, I don’t hate or avoid her. I find out why and move on. I tell people the truth and expect the truth. A friend who can tell you the truth is a gift. It’s refreshing. He isn’t pressuring you. He isn’t making assumptions. He is telling you what he wants. While the question might make you uncomfortable, respect his honesty. The best response is to be kind, considerate and direct. Tell him “thank you” (no f’in way). Let him know that you appreciate his honesty (at least ask me on a date, cheap ass). Then explain how you feel (I’m no ho). Finish by reminding him how much you appreciate his friendship (thanks for being an honest horn dog, I do appreciate that). If he avoids you, the friendship is finished. If he gives you permission to reject him, not much should change.