First Dates Dissected: The Worst and the Best

Most women are (hopefully) familiar with that wonderful floating/tingly feeling after an exceptionally great first date. Everybody knows that one of the best parts of dating is weeding out the men who are not worth your time in the long run, and who, based on their actions or date etiquette, you know couldn’t possibly be ‘the one’. So what makes a great date so sensational? When we compare it to a horrible date we once had, what sticks out as the main factors that made that date so bad in comparison? Below is a comprehensive comparison of common date nuances to keep in mind to help decipher a truly “good” or “bad” date.  Ladies, my recommendation to  you is to print this out, fold it up, and keep it in your purse for reference.  Hopefully, if you are finding lots of behavior on the right hand side of things happening in your dating experiences,  you’ll now know exactly when to pull the plug.  Spoiler alert: it’s right away.

The Best

The Worst

  • His idea of a date is taking you out for a nice lunch or dinner – i.e, he takes you on a real date and comes up with a proper plan all on his own.
  • His idea of a date is inviting you over to his place for a “movie”, meeting you at a food court for a bite, or grabbing “a quick drink” somewhere. Umm not original, and are you serious?
  • He makes a plan with you well in advance. What a relief for you!
  • He asks you out the day of. (What if you haven’t washed your hair!?)
  • He takes the lead and decides on the where, the when, and remembers the small details. 
  • His laziness is incredibly evident – he’d prefer if you planned the date for him. Or worse, he’s indifferent. 
  • He’s chivalrous – a total gentleman who shows up on time, is attentive, and walks you to your door at the end of the date. All doors should be opened and all seats should be pulled out for you.
  • His demeanor is nonchalant and uncaring. He has bad manners and poor follow-through. He’s terrible with silverware. Worst of all, he calls all the shots without asking you what you’d like to do.
  • He does not try to make a move after the date – other than a respectful kiss goodnight. He has no hidden agenda.
  • His whole agenda centers on making that move – attempting to grab your leg under the table, or overly aggressive kissing. Gross.
  • He pays the bill without hesitation.
  • It’s a Mexican standoff when the bill arrives.
  • He’s definitely not cheap – he orders a nice bottle of wine for the table, and tells you to order whatever you’d like.
  • Everything he does screams “I’m cheap!” He pulls out a Groupon and asks the waitress what the cheapest beer they have on tap is.
  • His idea of conversation is appropriate, charming, and interesting or funny  – just like  you!
  • His idea of conversation is inappropriate, rude, or just plain boring. He brings up exes, money, politics, religion. 
  • He has a positive energy and there are no awkward silences (unless they are quick and adorable).
  • His energy seems negative, and there are a ton of awkward silences. Why does he keep checking his phone?
  • His whole evening was reserved for you. The date was not only fun – it lasted for hours!
  •  He was rushing the date, almost as though he had another date afterwards.
  •  He asks you questions and takes a genuine interest in what you have to say.
  •  He only talks about himself and seems bored or disinterested when you speak. Does he not see how adorable you are!?
  •  The goodnight kiss is amazing – it leaves you breathless and wanting more.
  •  The goodnight kiss is awful. He has horrible breath and is not a good kisser.
  •  He’s already asking you about your schedule for next week, and planning your next date. His plan? The next date will be even better than the first!
  •  You don’t get the vibe he’s the kind of guy who cares enough to plan the second date in advance. In fact, from here on out it will probably only be invitations over to his place.
Erica Gordon

Posted by Erica Gordon

Erica is the Executive Assistant at POF, and as a single twenty-something woman working in the online dating industry, she has a lot of experience when it comes to dating. After earning her Psychology degree, she landed her challenging and dynamic role within the POF family in early 2012. When she's not hard at work or sharing her passion for writing, Erica be found laughing it up at a comedy show, walking around in kits with her friends, or hiking one of BC's beautiful trails.

4 thoughts on “First Dates Dissected: The Worst and the Best

  1. Thanks for the information. I can’t tell you how many dates I’ve been on where all he did was talk about himself, or work. Checking his phone. Geez. One was one too many.
    I could only hope the men get to see this. But on the other hand, I’d Luke to know what their side is.
    Thanks for sharing.
    Still waiting for my prince charming.

  2. This was HORRIBLY contradictory and confusing! Seriously: “taking the lead” is cool but “calling the shots” is not? Decide what you want, then get back to us, ladies.

  3. While much of what the author wrote can (could…should?) be applied to women as well, society still puts most of the courtship skill requirements on men. Do you think all of this doting on a woman can last forever? In theory it could, if the man has very little career demands. Equality has a price that many of you cant or wont find “affordable”.

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