We're all guilty of some of these cringeworthy crimes...
‘Tis the season of finding someone to snuggle up by the fire and hibernate with. Since it’s now winter and everyone is staying in and binge-watching Netflix, (instead of frolicking around sunny beer gardens and festivals), you’ve probably been forced to go out of your comfort zone and enter the dating scene.
But here’s the thing. Dating is HARD. Everyone’s had their fair share of bad first dates: Sometimes we’re the one cringing at the antics of the person sat before us, sometimes we’ve been guilty of screwing it all up ourselves (if we’re being REALLY honest).
And so, with no further ado, here’s our round-up of the worst crimes you can commit on a first date:
(P.s. these apply to both the sexes)
1. Not asking any questions
This has to be the cardinal sin. There is NOTHING more boring than sitting listening to someone go on and on, and on, and on. Before you know it, you’re into your second round of drinks, and realising that he/ she has asked absolutely nothing about you so far. You on the other hand, know the street they lived on in their second year of uni and what they’re getting their mum for Xmas… Come on guys. Buck up, sit back and put your listening ears on.
2. Getting upset talking about exes
This one is a bit tricky, as inevitably at some point during the date, an ex or two is going to get brought up, be it a funny past anecdote, or accidentally slipping in the expiry date of your last relationship. But while it may be thought of as first date taboo, in reality, talking about exes is totally fine, if you’re fine with the fact that you have one. Yep, if the mere mention of your ex brings a tear to your eye quicker than the waiter can refill your glass, it can give off blaring red warning signs. Quell it.
PS. If you repeatedly bring them up for no reason, this is also bad. Nobody wants to spend a first date hearing about the cheese making course you went to on your third anniversary with your ex. (Nobody EVER wants to hear about that, actually.)
3. Talking about internet dating apps too much
In today’s modern world, the date sat in front of you likely came to pass after many an avid swiping session on Tinder/ Happn/ Bumble/ Hinge/ Plenty of Fish/ Guardian Soulmates (if that’s your kind of thing) on a hungover Sunday evening. You know it, they know it. You can make a small joke about it and then move on.
DO NOT talk for a prolonged period of time about how many people you’re currently messaging. DO NOT mention the endless past dates you been on searching for ‘the one’. And, most of all, DO NOT casually reply to another prospective Tindate whilst on said first date (the horror).
4. Dropping into conversation that you VERY recently split up with your long term ex…
Being honest is good. There’s no reason to lie if you’re recently single and getting back out there – good for you! However, dropping into conversation that you split up with your previous partner of 8 years two days ago will likely send your potential future mate running for the hills (/tube stop). Keeping it vague and casually just answering ‘recently’ will stand you in much better stead for securing that elusive second date.
5. Spending too long in toilet
This one isn’t just aimed at girls. Whether it’s nerves, panic make-up reapplying or irritable bowels (we hope not the latter…), nobody wants to hang around too long if left alone for ages. Plus it’s super rude, and they might think you’ve legged it out the window. Even if you are having drinks on a rooftop.
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6. Constantly checking your phone mid-conversation
This is rude any time you’re out with other people, never mind on a first date. Not giving someone your full attention makes you look like you have something far more compelling going on in your phone than your date; making your first impression a big, fat failure. Whether you’re just updating your friends on how the date is going, or replying to the 75 group messages that have appeared on your phone since you last looked, it’s rude. Put the phone away, now!
7. Asking for a second date before the first one has even started
Maybe you’re relieved they look like their dating profile pic, maybe you’re just excited someone has laughed at one of your jokes before you’ve even sat down. Whatever it is, slow down and see how the date goes. Nothing reads ‘DESPERATE’ as glaringly as pushing the topic of a second date before you’ve really had a chance to get to know each other on the first one. Also the saying ‘hard-to-get’ didn’t come from nowhere; pushing for a second date immediately may allude to the fact that you have no further plans other than this date and you want to lock it down as soon as you can. Watch your date lie, squirm, then never to be heard from again.
*hangs head in despair*
8. Dissecting the good and bad parts of the date, while you’re still, er, on it
Whether you’re getting the infamous ‘butterflies’, or you’re unimpressed with their impression of an irish accent, whatever thoughts you have – keep them to yourself! Analysing the strengths and weaknesses of the evening is to be saved for the later, when you’re picking it apart with your BFF over Whatsapp, not handing over a Q&A for your date to fill in at the end of the night. Just go with the flow and stop putting so much pressure on it by overthinking.
9. Getting blind drink and throwing up
This is particularly poignant for first dates, because NOBODY goes for dinner on a first date anymore. It’s all casual drinks down the pub, or if you’re lucky – a nice wine bar. If you haven’t had a chance to line your stomach first, this is a tricky road to navigate: you want to drink enough that you loosen up and have fun on your date, but not drink so much that you get totally wasted and embarrass yourself, throw up on your date or pass out on the pavement (to be honest, that’s just a rule for life, dating or not). Pace yourself and alternate alcohol with water, or get some nibbles – everyone has to eat and maybe if things hot up you can feed each other…?
10. Trying to force yourself home with them
This one goes hand in hand with lunging prematurely during said date. Read the signs. If all is going smoothly, by all means kiss away, and maybe more… But don’t throw your lips across the table haphazardly just because the occasion calls for it, and DON’T under any circumstance think it means you can jump into a cab (and by cab we mean bus, because we’re poor) home with them univited. It’s unlikely for a first date, ESPECIALLY not on a school night. Nobody wants to wake up on a Tuesday morning with a severe hangover and last night’s makeup on, on a school night. Nobody.
So maybe you’re reading this, smug and safe in the knowledge that you’ve never commited any of these dating faux-paus (yeah, right). But if truth bells are ringing in your ears and you’re cringing at the memory of past dating antics; check yourself before you wreck your next date. Now that’s all sorted, have a look at our Best Places To Go On A First Date