Patti's Blog

What to do when you hate your first date

baddateAnyone who’s been single for more than a second has gone on a downright rotten first date. I’m talking about the kind of date that makes you doubt that the entire human race, because if this a-hole is a human, then something is majorly wrong with humanity in general. Maybe the date says something racist or is way too overtly sexual or has political beliefs that are offensive to you. Maybe he takes out dental floss and cleans his teeth at the table, in front of you, and flicks a piece of chewed bread onto your plate of pasta. (That happened to a friend of mine. For real! Then he burped. This went down like two decades ago and we still laugh about it.) No matter what he does to ick you out, I have some solid advice for how to deal with the situation.

Don’t waste your time

End the date. I know that some people would tell you to give the guy a chance and finish out the meal or order a second drink. But, they’re wrong. Flat out wrong. Once a woman has the icks about a guy, she can’t get un-icked. You just need to get out of the date and start the post-bad-date recovery process—call a friend, write in your diary, pour yourself a drink, whatever works for you. Once a date has gone sour, I say don’t waste another second (or calorie) on it. Be polite and there’s no need to lie about a sudden emergency. Just end the date, be clear about not seeing a romantic future, and get the eff out of there!

Don’t take it personally

I know that it’s hard to not take dating personally. What’s more personal than falling in love? Here’s the thing, though, a first date isn’t about you at all. Even if it’s a set up and the guy was a nightmare, you didn’t get set up with him because you’re a nightmare. You got set up with him because your matchmaking friend was a bit misguided. Or maybe you had really good text banter with this guy and when you met up, it was a disaster. Don’t beat yourself up for having a bad picker. Some dudes are different in text than they are in person. Just be proud of yourself for picking up on his red flags as early as you did! A man on bad behavior on a first date with you reflects literally nothing back on you. If you decide to give him a second chance, though, that actually is on you, lady!

Don’t let it slow you down

Keep this bad date in perspective and treat it as what it was—one bad date. This isn’t a reflection on the selection of available men, this isn’t a cue to stop dating and this certainly isn’t a reason to cancel any other upcoming first dates. Dating is your path to finding your true love. That bad date was a step you needed to take to get to your final guy. Keep pressing forward and you’ll find your forever man. And just think about how great your first date with Mr. Right is going to feel, especially compared to what just happened with Mr. Wrong.

Bad dates happen to very good women. Just keep on keeping on, sister!

Photo credit: Maks Karochkin / CC BY