You’re out on that all-important first date with someone you think you would like to know better, or it may be someone you just met through common friends. But the evening is turning out to be a disaster right from the word goes. You don’t know if you’re supposed to end the date abruptly or soldier on thinking that things will take a turn for the better. If you’re not familiar with the fact that dates, especially the first ones, can and will go wrong more often than not, here are a few pointers to help you out in times of awkwardness:
If your date is more preoccupied with other things rather than focusing on you, try a direct or indirect approach to see why this is so. Ringing cell phones can be extremely annoying in the middle of a date, as can your date’s obsession with the other men/women in the restaurant or club. If it continues in spite of your protests, excuse yourself and head for home.
If your date is drunk or on the way to getting there, firmly refuse any more alcohol for your table. If he/she’s sober enough to understand what you’re saying, tell them that it’s time you both went home, and that maybe you can talk to each other the next day when your heads are clearer. If not, call a taxi or see them safely home before you go on to your place.
If the conversation takes an ugly turn, apologize if you’re the one who said something incendiary. If not, tell your date politely that they’re being rude and that it would be a good idea to steer the topic to something more neutral. If he/she still continues to rant and rave, wish them goodnight and find your way home.
If you’re embarrassed by the way your date is behaving – being rude to the staff at the restaurant, eating noisily, talking loudly or displaying poor table manners – wait out the evening patiently. At the end of the meal, politely decline offers to see you home or hints of a second date. Instead, thank your date for a nice evening and leave alone.
The worst part of a first date is when one person is interested in pursuing the relationship while the other is not. If you’re the interested party, take a hint when your date is vague about meeting again or calling you. Don’t press for phone numbers and times of calls. If you’re not too keen on the relationship, be honest but kind in letting down the other person.
This post was contributed by Heather Johnson, who writes on the subject of best dating services. She invites your feedback at heatherjohnson2323 at gmail dot com.