It’s really not that complicated. I think this paints the picture of the meek, and feeble pre-feminist lady incapable of being assertive (as opposed to subservient, or aggressive). She’s simply not being rude if she explains that she values “him” (or “her” for that matter) as a friend, but wants to make it clear that she’s not interested in intimacy. The person who receives this boundary as rudeness is simply not worth being friends with. I’d hate to think that men are generally as dumb, and think skinned as this portrayed. Why don’t we believe better of both sexes?