Q: I’m asking for help on this one because this problem keeps coming up, usually on first (and last!) dates. I’m talking about the awesome girl you meet online who turns out to be a crazy chick with way too many issues. And believe me, it takes a lot for me to turn down a girl who wants to hook up. Okay, so they’re not all crazy, but I just want to know how to get out of a not-so-fun, awkward, I-never-want-to-see-you-again date. I just don’t want to act like a jerk. I have a buddy that does the “I gotta use the can, and just disappears” method which is not cool in my books. So what are my options?
A: Men and women have to deal with this problem all the time. Especially those of us who are not into committed relationships. The “not-so-fun” dates you talk about are par for the online dating course. Inevitable, to be sure.
First off, your buddy’s “vanishing act” is so not cool. It actually made me cringe. Most “bad” dates, where you don’t want to hook up or see another person again, are caused by a lack of chemistry… and no one deserves that behavior just because you didn’t “hit it off”. Maybe there was more to the story, but c’mon. For me, this is only acceptable if a date is physically, verbally, or emotionally abusive… then anything goes to get the hell out.
Whenever possible, take the high road when you find yourself on a “bad” date. This means sit through it, have a conversation, and take what you can from the dating process. Sometimes, finding out what we don’t like helps us discover what we do. And this is why I always do coffee dates first time round, because how long can a cup of coffee last anyway. And if fireworks do go off, extending the date is always an option. At the end of an awkward date, honesty is appreciated. Say you had a nice time, but you just don’t see things working out… end of story.
A lot of casual daters use the “emergency text… I gotta go” routine, but it’s so cliché, that even if it is true, you’ll look like a jerk. Don’t risk your dating reputation by being cowardly.
If a bad date comes back to haunt you, you know, as in cyber stalking or worse, lying is okay. I usually tell them I’m still hung up on or getting back together with an ex. This has always worked for the boys who don’t listen or can’t take a hint.
Remember: There’s something to be learned on every date, even the bad ones.
Guys: What’s your m.o. when it comes to ending a “not-so-fun” first date?
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