Every guy has been a bad date. Based on your Tinder messages, everything should have been perfect. You liked her photos, had three friends in common, and shared a love for Bon Iver and cheese fries. But as soon as you sat down at your table, you knew the two of you didn’t have a future. And then you were faced with the ultimate dilemma. Should you suffer through bad conversation and awkward silence? Or should you bail? Navigating bad dates will always be excruciating but the following tips can make it a little less painful.
This is the hardest one but it requires the least creativity. And it ensures you get the message across loud and clear. Be honest with her and let her know you’re not feeling it. There’s no need to cite references (i.e. that comment she made about hating Game of Thrones). But you can let her down gently. It was great to meet her but you don’t see it going any further. She should understand and respect your honesty.
Don’t Send Mixed Signals
If you aren’t enjoying yourself, don’t pretend like you are. Every time you share another intimate detail from your life, touch her hand, or laugh hysterically at her jokes, it sends a message that you’re having a good time. One way to level set expectations is to skip all that fun stuff. Keep the story about your childhood hamster to yourself. And keep your hands on your side of the table. The less engaging you are, the faster the date will end.
Keep It Cordial
A handshake is a great way to end a business meeting. It’s also the perfect way to say you’re not interested at the end of a bad date. Sometimes, no matter how hard you try to signal that you’re not into her, the message may not be delivered. One surefire way to send it is with a handshake. Can you think of a less romantic gesture?
Make Something Up
Okay, this may not be the most ethical thing, and dating karma might come back around to bite you in the ass. But you could just make something up to get out of it. You’ve got an early morning tomorrow. Or you’ve still got some work emails to catch up on before bed. Or you left the oven on. Just something to get out of there. Sometimes you need to abort the mission at all costs.
If you spend your nights actively swiping, a bad date or two is inevitable. Play your cards right and you can get out of it unscathed.