If there is one thing we can say about online dating, everyone’s got a story – usually, quite a few of them. And by story, I mean the jaw-dropping, you’ve-got-to-be-kidding-me kind. There are plenty of happy endings that evolve from singles meeting online, but the old adage “you’ve got to kiss a lot of frogs before you meet your prince” rings very true in today’s dating scene – for both men and women.
After hearing horror stories at what today’s singles endure on dates, I turned to my Facebook friends to gain some insight on the top five things that are instant turnoffs for online daters. In fact, it’s not just about dating online, these are the top five turnoffs regardless of how you meet.
5) The fifth biggest dating turnoff is a three-way tie between bragging, rudeness, and lying.
You might think that talking about your success and all the expensive things you own will impress your date; in fact, it’s usually a turn-off in any environment. Your financial status might make you a good provider, but talking about it lacks class. Another indicator of a lack of class is how you treat those who are serving you. Being rude to the waitstaff, the valet, or your date is simply not acceptable. Being late is also rude. The minute you realize you’re going to arrive late, it’s an absolutely must that you call your date – and please, don’t have a lame excuse. If you aren’t doing everything in your power to get to the date on time, what’s the point? And lying? Well, this one starts before the date but reveals itself quickly. As Tamara listed as a no-no; “Lying about anything before the first date just to get you there. This includes age, older photos showing younger/fitter self, (or) job.”
4) In a two-way tie for fourth place are money complaints and sexual comments/sexual pressure.
Have you ever chosen the restaurant and then complained about the prices? According to respondents, this happens frequently and it’s a big turn-off. Talking about money in any capacity is a no-no, but to complain about the cost of the date itself? No, no, no!
As a woman, I can vouch for the turn-off, ‘sexual comments too soon’. What is ‘too soon’? Skip the sex talk until you’ve gone out at least three times. What is ‘sexual”? Anything relating to getting physical with your date. Why is this a turn-off? It gives the impression that sex is all you’re focused on. Sex is great, but let’s get to know each other first, otherwise you look like a horn-dog and not an original one. If you wait until we’ve gone out a few times, at least it seems you’re a horn-dog for me specifically, not for just any breathing female. As Annie frustratingly shared; “…being too aggressive sexually. (…it happens ALL THE TIME.)”
3) The third place position goes to bad hygiene.
Hard to believe that people show up to first dates dressed poorly, with bad breath and/or body odor, and talk with their mouth full while eating, but it happens. I have a friend who went out with a guy who showed for their first date in baggy shorts and an old sleeveless t-shirt. Maybe you want your date to see you at your worst from the get-go? Bad move, baby. The interest disappears when you appear looking (and smelling!) like you just left the gym or rolled out of bed. Annie put it bluntly; “Why do men want a sexy woman and then dress like an alter cocker?” Come on people, does this really need to be pointed out?
2) Second place goes to bashing your ex.
Talk about baggage! Dates are for getting to know each other – not getting to know each others’ ex’s. As Tamara pointed out; “Bitching about his ex/alimony/child support OR insisting on asking you about your ex. We aren’t there to talk about them!!!” Complaints in general are not the fodder for first dates, but to specifically trash your ex, curse your ex, or complain about the child-support you have to pay is a huge turn-off. One respondent replied; “Saying their ex doesn’t deserve any help and they pay the minimum in child support. (This is a really really bad one)”. We know there are two sides to every story and rarely is one person entirely the ‘angel’ while the other is the ‘devil’. Putting the blame for your failed marriage on your ex and not owning any of it shows that you are far from being in a place where you can contribute to a healthy, long-term relationship. The most you should say about your ex is that you wish him/her well and you learned a lot about yourself from the breakup. Don’t talk bad about ur ex. Period. As Annie clarifies: “You can state the challenges and why ur happier now, but please don’t curse about her.”
1) The number one biggest dating turnoff? Lack of interest in your date.
This includes not contributing to the planning of the date, talking about yourself the entire evening, not asking questions of your date, and texting, answering, or playing with your phone.
Show some initial interest and creativity by helping to plan the date. As Jen put it; “Have a plan when you ask me to hang out. Suggest a place, time, and activity. The “whatever you want to do baby” stuff gets old.” Annie clarified; “I don’t want to be your cruise director. If you have no interests and life of your own, don’t look to me to create it for you. Bring something to the table.”
Talking about yourself may seem like a great way for the other person to get to know you, but there should be a balance. As Suzi explains; “(A) first date be like a game of ping-pong not a monologue.”
And what about your cell phone? Please, please, please, turn off the ringer and put the phone away when on a date! The only acceptable phone conversation is one between you and your kids in an emergency. Otherwise, the phone has no place on your date. As David implored; “Please spend the date getting to know me, not texting your friends.”, and Howard promised; “The next time I go out on a date and the woman takes a phone call on her cell phone I am walking off.”