5. They don’t ask you questions about yourself.
Have you ever been on a date where you learned everything about a person from birth until now including their weird relationship with their father, their time abroad and what they ate for breakfast? Someone who isn’t curious about you isn’t worth your time. It’s a major red flag if they’re more excited to have the opportunity to boast about themselves than get to know you.
6. They have one too many drinks.
There is a time and place to get drunk and have a sloppy hookup. A first date isn’t that time nor place. Unless you’re into that, then godspeed. First dates are usually a get-to-know-you time to see if this person is someone you want to invest more time in. If someone can’t get through a few hours without social lubricant, this could be a sign they have an unhealthy relationship with alcohol or have low self-esteem. There’s nothing wrong with having a drink or two, but if someone chooses to get sloppy on a first date, run.
7. You don’t think they’re funny.
If you don’t laugh on the date, it’s a dud. Even if they were nice and paid and love the same TV shows as you do, if they didn’t make you laugh, then it’s probably not worth your time. If you had to force laughter because you felt bad, it’s definitely not worth your time. A shared sense of humor is such an important part of a good relationship. Don’t settle for nice enough when someone could be so much more.
8. They spend more time looking at their phone than at you.
It’s simply unacceptable to spend time on your phone during a date. Checking it now and again is okay, but if someone is literally scrolling through and double tapping on Instagram while you’re sitting across from them picking at a salad, it’s a hard pass. Suzanne Degges-White, Ph.D., professor in the Department of Counseling at Northern Illinois University told Verily:
“If you don’t warrant his full attention on the first date, chances are that he’s made his priorities clear. His ability to focus on the potential relationship that the two of you are trying to establish on the first date can be a good indication of his future willingness to be emotionally present later on.”
9. They don’t offer to pay.
The age-old “who pays on a date” question varies from person to person, but I have my own rule. I think the person who asked should pay on the first date. Moving forward past the first date, I think it’s cool to split or take turns paying. So, if you get asked on a date and they don’t offer to pay, I think it’s tacky and in poor taste. I also offer to pay every single time. I don’t ever assume someone will pay for me, but I do have my little “rule” in the back of my mind. Bonus: if they offer to split the check and itemize every item ordered, think twice about going out again. If you split the bill, just do it down the middle. Cheap is not cute and is a huge red flag.
The bottom line here is that dating can be grueling, but knowing what you want and what you don’t will help you to weed out the duds and stop you from wasting your time with people who aren’t right for you. It’s much better to spend time alone than with the wrong person. Look out for red flags and make shitty first dates the last.