So you met a girl, and you took her on a date. You wined her; you dined her. It went perfectly, you think. But days later, when you ask her out again, she gives you the big brush off.
What gives? Why didn’t she want to see you again?
Well, friend, you probably made one of five tragic mistakes that are guaranteed to make your date run screaming for the hills. Lucky for you, these mistakes are easy enough to fix. And while I can’t speak for every woman on earth, these things I’m about to tell you not to do are pretty universally reviled, so it would behoove you to take this advice.
Tragic mistake 1: You talked about sex too directly and too much.
A girlfriend of mine went out with a guy recently who kept repeating how he was too old to have to teach a girl how to give him a blowjob. Another girlfriend of mine had a guy repeatedly compliment her on her figure in oddly specific terms (“Your legs are so shapely” and “Your curves are so sinuous,” for example).
Me personally? I once had a first date tell me about how much he enjoyed eating a girl out while she was having her period. I shit you not.
While the sex talk levels are obviously varying, the result was ultimately the same: total revulsion. One of the fastest ways to creep out a woman is to lead with how much you want to bang her/how much you enjoy banging/all the ways in which you’ve banged other people. It makes us uncomfortable for a variety of reasons.
First dates are better spent channeling Victorian England: hinting and coyly flirting until a critical mass of passion has been reached and you just have to rip each other’s clothes off.
Tragic mistake 2: You veered the conversation into serious stuff.
At some point, you will have to tell her that your mom died or that you suffered from depression, but on a first date? You’re getting to know a girl, not having a therapy session. We won’t know whether to comfort you or charge you for the hour.
Save your tissues for your masturbation cleanup and keep the first date conversation to lighter topics like favorite movies/TV shows and what else you do for fun.
Tragic mistake 3: You were a cheapskate.
Guys, you gotta pay for the first date. You know this, you know you know this and I know you know this, so we won’t beat that dead horse. But there are other annoying things you do which still paint you as the new millennium’s Ebenezer Scrooge, ruthlessly cataloguing every penny spent.
For example, have you ever asked a girl to meet you during prime dinner hours and didn’t suggest getting food? Yeah, we notice that. Our growling stomachs won’t let us forget that it’s now 9 p.m., we’ve been out with you since six, and you haven’t said a word about it, like some sort of cyborg who runs on oil instead of meat.
Look, I get that having to pay for the first date is a shitty, shitty thing to endure, but here’s the thing: You don’t need to go overboard. Plan a date you can afford. Find a bar with excellent happy hour deals or slip the server a Groupon when your date isn’t looking. My last two boyfriends took me out, respectively, for hot dogs and afternoon beers on our first dates.
If you don’t want to take her to dinner, don’t, but pick a time to meet that skirts the “are we going to be eating?” question (i.e., late night or early enough that you could part ways before food time).
Tragic mistake 4: You were indecisive.
On a first date, you need to take the role of cruise director. You need to come prepared with suggestions of what to do and where to go next (because good dates involve multiple locations!).
Nothing is less sexy than someone answering the question “What do you want to do?” with “I dunno, what do YOU want to do?” Ugh. Riddle me this: If you don’t have the balls to make a simple decision, how will you ever have the balls to throw her down on the bed and make hot, sweaty love to her later?
Tragic mistake 5: You were rude to the wait staff.
You could open every door, roll out a red carpet, carry us across the threshold and fuck us with a diamond dick and we would still be unimpressed if you were rude to the Starbucks barista when you went to order us a couple of mocha lattes.
It doesn’t matter how nice you were to us—being rude to people in the service industry is a one-way ticket to the Land of Zero Second Dates. And I should note that you might not think you’re being rude. You might think you’re just requesting the good service owed to you. But the minute we hear you get a terse tone in your voice, our Asshole Alarm goes on red alert.
The best policy for a first date is to err on the side of caution, grit your teeth and tip them anyway.
Did you see yourself in this list? If the answer is yes, you’re not without hope; all of these things are fixable. You just have to adjust your settings for next time. Good luck!
[Man and woman at dinner via Shutterstock]