So you’ve chatted and texted and emailed for a while and you finally agree to a date. You go to a nice restaurant and the conversation is pleasant, but there just isn’t that spark in person, or frankly he/she is just wrong for you on many levels! How do you avoid a second date? How do you exit this first meeting easily without complications or hurt feelings?
Have specific strategies set so you can bow out gracefully. In other words, “Hope for the best but be prepared for the worst.”
Below are some strategies that will help:
- Be honest. No one wants to be pitied or strung along. So try saying something like: “I’ve enjoyed the time we have spent together, but I didn’t feel the spark I need to move things forward.” Or: “Thank you for a lovely time. You are really a great person, but I don’t think we are a match.” And stop there. Do not be pulled into a discussion where you critique the date and have to point out what you feel is missing, inevitably leading to hurt feelings and an angry end.
- Be clear. Say exactly what you mean. Sometimes we trying to be so polite that the person we’re talking to becomes totally confused. When that happens, that person is likely to hear what they want to hear. So your statements should be absolutely obvious. Whatever you do, do not lead your date on and then ghost them, as in not answering texts, emails or phone calls. If you have ever been ghosted yourself, you know how hurtful and annoying that can be.
- Be firm. Be assertive and unflinching. Once you have set your boundary do not allow yourself to be talked into a second date. Trust yourself enough to know what is best for you and move on. If your date continues to bring up possibilities, and what ifs, and tries to bargain with you, simply repeat what you have said, word for word. “I’m sorry but I do not want a second date.” Or, “I am glad I met you but we won’t be seeing each other again.” This is the “broken record technique” and works well in this situation. No means no. Eventually the message will get through.
Two red flags to watch out for:
- Fear. Fear as in thinking, “what if this is my last chance to find someone?” would be a fear reaction. DO NOT act out of fear. It is a weak position and does not do justice to how great you are.
- Insecurity. Insecurity undermines your best self. Insecurity is that little voice in your head saying, “what if I can’t do better than this?” DO NOT listen to that deceptive whisper. Know that you CAN and WILL find the RIGHT person. “Settling” would be an awful injustice to you AND the other person!
Saying NO to what you don’t want opens up the space for what you do want with someone before you agree to a second date!