So after flirting outrageously online for months, you finally got your dream date. It’s a nerve-wracking time. After all, having built up an email friendship with only a few delectable photos to go by, you so want this date to work out. The moment of truth arrives and your heart sinks, actually it plummets as you can see this dream date is going to a nightmare. The photo was totally misleading and this person is like a complete stranger to you. So what do you do? Chances are that you still go through with it because after all, you have been chatting to each other for so long, you are bound to have some common ground surely?
So you do your best to avoid that sinking miserable, let-down feeling and put a brave face on it. Ok, so your date isn’t doing it for you on that all important first impression scale but who knows? Maybe it will get better throughout the evening. After all, you literally have hours together and that’s plenty of time for that good old chemistry to spark up again.
But it doesn’t get better, you find yourself working hard at making polite conversation. You’ve talked about every subject under the sun by email; the conversation is dryer than stale toast, it’s getting hard to feign interest.
In desperation, you try to find some good in this stranger, some appealing quality that will redeem the evening somehow and will verify that you have not wasted months dreaming about this moment and that wonderful connection that was so going to happen. You search and you search and you finally admit, this date has no redeeming qualities, in fact, you wonder if you have actually met the wrong person or worse, if someone else wrote those wonderful mesmerizing and compelling emails to you?
It’s on the tip of your tongue to ask but that just means trying to find more conversation that is of some interest to you. You’re not just bored, you are wondering how on earth you are going to get away. Why oh why didn’t you arrange for someone to call and say that there was an emergency? Worse, you begin to wish fervently that you hadn’t spent days bragging about this wonderful date because you are going to have to go back to work and admit it had been a disaster.
You bite back the loud sigh that was about to escape and instead cannot resist looking at your watch. Surely your watch has stopped? It can’t only be an hour or so into the date? You have never known time to go so slow. It’s no good, you can’t waste another couple of hours on this person who you have no connection with at all and probably never will. Escape plans may start to flood into your mind at this point, is the window in the toilets big enough to squeeze through? What if you say you have to ring home to check on the baby? (Even if there isn’t a baby) you could then have a perfect excuse to go home.
The options might seem limited at this point. You either limbo under the table when your date looks the other way and run out of the front entrance as quick as possible or you suffer an evening of interminable boredom. But wait, there is another option. The evening might be the most boring on record but isn’t it important to at least be honest?
Leaving someone alone and just sneaking away is not a good way to end the date, sure it might be memorable in terms of embarrassing moments for both but it’s important to treat others in the way that you would wish to be treated.
Don’t spend ages thinking of a perfect excuse as to why you have to go, instead just ask the simple question ‘Is this really working out for you?’ Hopefully, you will both be on the same wavelength and agree that that the date is not working and once you have brought the subject to the fore, you can then explain that you don’t feel that there is a connection between you or that there ever will be.
Avoid the temptation to soften the blow or to pander to ego by offering to remain friends unless you really wish to of course, sometimes it’s best to just draw a line underneath an association and chalk it down to experience. Don’t be tempted to give a parting good night kiss, instead, make a quick but dignified exit and get out of there knowing that at least you gave it a go but was honest to the end.