Bad dates happen. Whether we’re just not compatible with our dates or we quickly realize that we have nothing to talk about, bad dates suck. During these times, it can definitely seem like time is at a standstill. But, we’ve compiled a few foolproof ways to ensure you don’t lose your mind on a terrible date.
What Does “Terrible” Mean to You?
First and foremost, look inward to figure out what “terrible” means to you. Is the atmosphere a little inappropriate for a first date? Is your date a little awkward? Remember that there’s a difference between being on a bad date and not really giving the night a chance. Don’t walk into a first date thinking that things won’t be a tad uncomfortable.
If your date is rude to you or others, obviously drop them. But if they’re having some trouble steering the conversation, take the lead. If the venue isn’t super great, suggest going somewhere else. Give the night a chance before you bail completely.
Laugh About It
Bad dates are oftentimes great stories for your friends. Take everything in stride and don’t be so quick to let one bad date ruin your whole evening. Keeping positive and finding the humor in a bad situation can help you destress. Even better, if you’re more laid back in the face of discomfort, your date might relax a little more too. Sometimes all it takes is one of you to cut through the awkwardness.
Schedule an Escape Call
This tried and true method will save you from bad dates. Let a friend know that you have a date that night. Decide on a time for them to call (or text) you if things aren’t going well. From there, it’ll be easier to head out and spare your date’s feelings.
That said, you should also take control if things aren’t going well. If it turns out that your date isn’t a great person, leave! You’re under no obligation to waste your time with someone who shouts at waitstaff or belittles you. If you want, let them know that their behavior is a massive turn-off before you leave them to sulk over their dessert. Don’t stand for those who mistreat you, even on a first date.
How to Prevent Bad Dates
If you really want to ensure your dates go well, there are some steps you can take. First, be sure you speak up when your date asks where you want to go or what you want to do. If you know you’re not the kind of person to enjoy a sports pub, don’t go. Sure, relationships are all about compromise, but a first date should be comfortable for both parties.
Second, do some homework on your date. Some light social media sleuthing will equip you with some good ice-breaker questions. If you notice any kind of a lull in the conversation, ask some questions about the other person based on the information you have.
Lastly, chat with them like they’re already your friend. First dates can go much better if you’re both familiar with each other. First dates can absolutely be awkward, but they don’t need to be! Remember that first dates aren’t as high stakes as we once thought. Sure, it’s nice to make a good impression, but if you’ve been chatting for weeks, things will feel right in-person.
Roll with the punches and keep your head high; your first date will be much better if you’re laid back. Don’t give up so quickly when things go south, try to take charge. If all else fails, cut it short and relish in the fact that you just dodged a bullet.