Getting the courage to ask someone on a date is hard enough, but having to tell them you are not interested in a second date is a skillset that many have yet to master.
Ok, that's to positive of a statement. What I should have said is "The world is terrible at dating, so don't exect them to be any better at telling you that you are not a match."
We know this is true because this is why the terms "Breadcrumbing and Ghosting" have been coined. People are horrible at communicating this very important bit of information and so we default to bad habits because they are easier.
In an effort to steer the world in a better direction, here are a few tips to help you through your next post-date follow up.
1. Be Kind, Remember Everyone has Feelings
As I have mentioned before, asking someone on a date takes ton of courage, so recognize that the person on ther receiving will be sensative about your decision. Also, we are ALL going to be in this postion as some point in our lives, so treat this person with the utmost respect. Remember, a good, clean break adds a few Karma points to your end of the scale and who doesn't want good Karma.
2. Be Direct and Do Not Make Any Excuses
The worst kind of communication, is when someone makes a poor excuse like "I'm too busy" or "I have tons of errands to run this week." The best thing to do in any scenario is to be direct and do not leave any opportunity for that peson to find a way to make date 2 happen.
For example say:
"Thank you so much for the wonderful evening. I enjoyed getting to know you, but I don't feel that there is any romantic connection between us."
"I had a great time, let's hang out another time" or "I can't hang out this week, but I have a trip I am taking"
3. Never Send a Hitman
I am not sure that more needs to be said about this, but let's review just in case.
NEVER, and I mean NEVER have someone else break the news that there will not be a second date. You are not in the Mafia and this is not the Soprano's. We all need to put on our big boy pants and have enough respect for the other person and tell them yourself. That's what adults do and that is the rule.
If you think sending a friend, co-worker or neighbor is good. You my friend are on a one way trip to dating hell.
4. If you Text Your Decision, Don't Be a Jerk
Let's face it, in todays digital age, you may have to break the news via text or some sort of messaging. Keep in mind all of the previous tips. But most importantly, take the time to reread your message to make sure that you don't come off like a jerk. It's easy to draw conclusions from bad wording, so just think your sending a text to your Mother. (You know how they read too deep into things) So even if it takes a friend to proofread, make sure you are sending the right kind of message.
5. Don't Offer the Friend Card.
This is one of the biggest mistakes people make when trying to make a break. They use "friendship" as a peace offering. It's important to remember that in the "Dating Game" people are actively searching for a romantic connection, not friends. So offering friendship as a consulation prize, is just poor manners.
If the topic of freindship is brought up by them, make a decsion that will be best for the both of you. But keep in mind, you don't want to lead the other person on with friendship as they may think that this could be another chance at winning you over. Remember, one person will always be romantically invested.
6. Don't Send Mixed Signals
Last but not least, you must make sure that when you communicate that you are not compatible, you don't send mixed signals. ESPECIALLY, if you decide to remain freinds.
For example, you break things off but:
1. Are still "touchy feely" with them
2. You invite them on romantic dinner dates
3. You give kisses goodbye
It has been written in every teen-angst high school television show in history that this ALWAYS drives the person to think there is another chance at love. So as a rule, you need to draw some firm lines in the friendship and keep firm boundaries whenever you hang out.
David Cruz, III
David is the Founder and Creative Director of Finding Cupid. He has been writing about Dating & Relationships for the last five years and is a contributor to Huffington Post, Frontiers Media, Your Tango and many other publications. David can often be found in the greeting card aisle searching for the ultimate love card, or a bakery making bad decisions for himself.
Follow David on
Twitter & Instagram: @DavidCruzTMM