I'm pretty sure I'm not that into you
December 7, 2009 4:27 PM   Subscribe

Girl meets boy. Girl and boy have date. At end of date girl and boy say "let's do this again." Then after they each go home, girl thinks, "you know...I don't think I'm into boy as a romantic prospect after all." Now boy is asking for second date. What should girl do?

Yep, I'm girl. And the only reason that I"m hesitating is because a couple of other people I've spoken to think I should give it a second date to be sure, because he may have just been nervous and not making a good impression. But it feels dishonest to go on a second date when I feel such reservation like this.

Am I being fair to the guy? Should I have one more date and be sure? Or am I being unfair by going on one more date knowing that this is what I feel but not telling him?
posted by anonymous to Human Relations (65 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
 
Dating isn't about fair. Don't go. Don't feel guilty.
posted by Iggley at 4:30 PM on December 7, 2009 [6 favorites]


You should do this again. Not just to be sure, but because you said you would.

What can it hurt, anyway. A night out. After it doesn't work out, say so.
posted by rokusan at 4:31 PM on December 7, 2009 [6 favorites]


I'm with Rokusan. The last "first date" I was on, we didn't click romantically. His first impression of me was that was that I was a bit "edgy" (I have ADHD) and mine was that he was too reserved (he'd been burned on the dating scene before). We kept lines of communication open.

We'll be married 3 years in March.
posted by lleachie at 4:33 PM on December 7, 2009 [17 favorites]


I'd second going on the second date, but if you really don't want to just call him up and say, "You know, I had a great time with you, but the chemistry just wasn't there."
posted by biochemist at 4:35 PM on December 7, 2009 [2 favorites]


I had a friend whose mother's perennial advice was to give everybody three dates. I don't know if I agree or not, but at least it's a nice, pat answer. :)

Go on another date or two if you want, but after that, don't be sucked into something that you're not feelin'. If there still isn't anything there, just say you're not feeling it and move on.
posted by toomuchkatherine at 4:37 PM on December 7, 2009


There's certainly no harm in going on a second date, if it's sufficiently convenient for you but sometimes you just know if you're not meant for each other. Maybe tell him that things are getting super busy around the holidays and that after the new year might be easier. And then if he actually checks back in with you, see how you feel and make a plan? He might have lost his momentum by then too. But if you're SURE, then just tell him so. you made no promises, really.
posted by otherwordlyglow at 4:38 PM on December 7, 2009


I've been in that situation before, and, even if I do agree to a second date and make plans with the guy, I tend to get really flaky and put it off. So, even if the second date did go through, it would have been better for everyone if I had been honest about having second thoughts.

I guess it depends on how strong your reservations are. If they are pretty strong (and it sounds like they are), you probably should be honest and end things sooner rather than later.
posted by jennyesq at 4:40 PM on December 7, 2009


What should girl do?

Girl should act like adult. Girl should call boy and tell him the truth. Better yet, girl should meet boy in person, but on neutral ground, such as having coffee, and tell the truth. Girl should not wait any longer, or else girl risks letting bad situation become worse.
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 4:42 PM on December 7, 2009 [3 favorites]


You don't have to go on a second date if you don't want to. But I don't think it's dishonest to go on a second date even if you have a lot of doubts. People usually have doubts.
posted by grouse at 4:43 PM on December 7, 2009 [4 favorites]


Yeah, I don't think it's unfair to go on a second date with someone that you're not sure about... but it depends on how unsure you are. If I went out with a guy and he seemed nice enough and the conversation flowed well and I thought he was not hideously ugly, I'd give him another shot. I know I've been SUPER awkward on first dates because I was so nervous, like to the point that I silently prayed for the earth to just open up and swallow me whole. A second chance usually goes much more smoothly.

But if you're really really very sure that you're not interested in him romantically, it's okay to say no to a second date.
posted by palomar at 4:50 PM on December 7, 2009


You're allowed to back out if you want to, but unless the first date was a true disaster I might give it another shot. I can think of several people I didn't initially like when first meeting who ultimately became close friends. This includes my husband and my best friend. I avoided my husband for four years after meeting him. Then I gave him a second chance, and we've been together for over nine years. So it's possible you'll change your mind and like him, or maybe he really is a dud. Only you can decided if it's worth another date to figure it out.
posted by defreckled at 4:51 PM on December 7, 2009


It's totally up to you. You don't owe him anything. First dates are awkward though so a second one might not be a bad idea but if you don't want to that's ok. Just don't lead the poor guy on.
posted by chairface at 4:59 PM on December 7, 2009 [1 favorite]


I'd go on a second date just because it's probably the most painless way out of it at this point, and as other have said, what can it hurt? If anything, you can go in with zero nervousness or expectations. For you it can just be a pleasant evening out. I don't think you have to go just to be sure that something wouldn't have clicked. You can just go because you said you would and because it's nice to go out. People sport date all the time without knowing whether it'll lead to anything. You can focus on having a good time. Since people cut things off sometimes after the first date, sometimes after the second, and sometimes after a year, it's not going to be any harder or easier to do it after the second date if your feelings are confirmed. He'll get over it if you call it off. He could be having second thoughts himself for all you know. If you really don't want to go, don't. Again, he'll get over it and you'll be uncomfortable for only a short and tolerable period of time.
posted by Askr at 4:59 PM on December 7, 2009


I am boy. Normally, I would say that if you don't want to go on another date to tell me. It will save us both a lot of time, effort and maybe even $. However, in this case I say go. It sounds like at the time you were enjoying yourself enough that you said you would like to do it again. It was only after you got home and starting thinking about all the negs that you decided, meh. I think there is still a chance you like boy. My caveat is that if you are going to go with negative vibes just because you said you would, don't. If you can have an open mind, try it. Ehh, on second thought, don't go. You have already written this off in your mind. Waste of his time if you go.
posted by JohnnyGunn at 5:00 PM on December 7, 2009


If you do decide to go out with him again, do it with an open mind. If you go expecting to have a bad time, you'll have a bad time.

So if you can't go with an open mind, don't waste anyone's time and end it now.
posted by NoraCharles at 5:07 PM on December 7, 2009 [3 favorites]


This has been me before. I regretted not following up. I can tell you two things: 1) I agree you don't owe him anything; polite behavior often includes your white lie. 2) If you are looking for wisdom instead, go, with an open mind, and try to have fun.
posted by gensubuser at 5:11 PM on December 7, 2009 [1 favorite]


If you go out with him, and it's still not clicking, you should offer to pay your half of the check.

Worst feeling in the world for a guy = two dates, no chemistry, no action, lighter wallet
posted by j1950 at 5:13 PM on December 7, 2009 [3 favorites]


i always give it two dates even if i don't think im into him after the first. two is enough to know if the first was a fluke.
posted by raw sugar at 5:15 PM on December 7, 2009


I think you are ambivalent about whether you like this guy as a friend or more, and so I'd go for a second date. At worst you can explain in person at the end of the date that you aren't feeling the chemistry thing. But re j1950's comment, I personally think you should always pay your way even if it is love at first sight. My only exception to this rule is in my own marriage for special occasions like birthdays, for which my husband and I trade off taking each other out.
posted by bearwife at 5:22 PM on December 7, 2009


Am I being fair to the guy? Should I have one more date and be sure?

Yes. One more date. And not because of fairness to him--because it is in your best interest to give various people several looks to be sure. No need to reveal any feelings. An open mind. A second date isn't a marriage contract, its just a date.

Frankly, the fact you changed your mind when he's not around is a bit telling. You owe it to yourself to explore this one a bit more.
posted by Ironmouth at 5:31 PM on December 7, 2009 [3 favorites]


If I were "boy" in this situation, I would hope you would decide whether or not to go on the second date based entirely on your spontaneous, honest answer to the following question:

Do YOU want to?

If so, go on the second date. If not, don't go on the second date.

Anything else would not be "fair" to yourself or to boy.

I can't tell from your assessment -- "you know...I don't think I'm into boy as a romantic prospect after all" -- whether the answer is yes or no. It depends on how certain or uncertain your "I don't think..." is.

Vague, noncommital pleasantries uttered at the end of the first date along the lines of this-was-fun, let's-do-this-again-sometime, etc., are irrelevant. It's not in your interest or boy's interest to act as if such statements are a binding contract.
posted by Jaltcoh at 5:44 PM on December 7, 2009 [1 favorite]


Yeah, to me it depends on how strongly you changed your mind, and why. I can't quite tell if you thought at first you'd like to go out again, then later thought "well, gee, I don't know if he's really my type, so... hmmm... maybe not," vs. "SWEET JESUS, WHAT WAS I THINKING?!?"

If your response falls more in the first category (i.e., just a vague uncertainty) I think it's probably worth a second date just to see how you hit it off again. If, however, your response falls more into the second category (i.e., an intense gut reaction that the answer is decisively NO), then I think it's fair enough to call it off now.
posted by scody at 5:46 PM on December 7, 2009 [3 favorites]


Ha, I just got off the phone with a guy, telling him I didn't actually want to go on that second date. First time it's ever come up, for me.

Honestly, he was a nice guy, I just kept thinking of other things I would rather be doing while I was with him. It just didn't 'click' for me, I guess. I had actually intended to go on the second date at first, but the more I thought about it the more I kept thinking "...eh."

Life's too short.
posted by showbiz_liz at 5:51 PM on December 7, 2009


I'd go on the second date just to make sure. If you decide you don't want to date him, then he'll know you gave it two dates, which is all anyone could ask.

Better yet, girl should meet boy in person, but on neutral ground, such as having coffee, and tell the truth.

It was only one date! Even if they manage to go on two dates, the serious talk on neutral ground really isn't necessary - just turn down the next date nicely and tell him it ain't happening for you.
posted by The Light Fantastic at 5:56 PM on December 7, 2009 [1 favorite]


the serious talk on neutral ground really isn't necessary - just turn down the next date nicely and tell him it ain't happening for you.

It's just better to get the bad news ("I'm just not that into you.") in person, rather than by phone or email.
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 5:58 PM on December 7, 2009


And you have to tell us what you decided to do. C'mon, it's just a second post . . .
posted by bearwife at 5:58 PM on December 7, 2009 [2 favorites]


Maybe tell him that things are getting super busy around the holidays and that after the new year might be easier. And then if he actually checks back in with you, see how you feel and make a plan?

even if I do agree to a second date and make plans with the guy, I tend to get really flaky and put it off.


Frankly, these options are manipulation and not how humans should treat one another. If you really liked a boy would you want this done to you?

Also, not chatfilter. Specific situation, specific facts, specific question. Chatfilter is "what's your favorite song?"
posted by Ironmouth at 6:00 PM on December 7, 2009


Definitely go on a second date. Don't psych yourself out. It's just dinner/a movie/a walk/whatever. You're not agreeing to marry the guy or anything.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 6:17 PM on December 7, 2009 [1 favorite]


Go on the second date, but if he's paying don't allow it to be somewhere overly expensive.
posted by 26.2 at 6:22 PM on December 7, 2009


What's fair is a straight answer -- not leaving someone wondering. So either don't go and tell him why or go, and if you decide against a third date, tell him you are not interested.
posted by rahnefan at 6:24 PM on December 7, 2009


i say at least give a second date. if for no other reason than to be sure. i did this not all that long ago and i was glad that i at least knew without any doubt that there was no way that i wanted to go on another date with the guy.

my sister spent practically an entire weekend on a date and the guy came back and said the chemistry wasn't there. now they're married with a kid. i guess it's a toss up.
posted by itsacover at 6:30 PM on December 7, 2009


As others have said, you already agreed to do this. That should count for something.

It's a date. Just a date. Go.

And the next time you're on a first date and someone asks you for a second date, say "Call me." (Or text me or whatever that is not a yes.)
posted by Lesser Shrew at 6:36 PM on December 7, 2009


I don't know if anecdotes will help you, but I was Girl once, too.

The first date was great, we talked for hours, and we ended with the "let's do this again." But after replaying the evening in my head, I thought, "eh, that was really more of a friend thing, I'm probably just going to hurt him if I don't nip this in the bud." But I also felt guilty for writing him off so quickly and he was a really great guy, so I said yes to the second date. And the night of the second date I was feeling kinda under the weather, so I blamed myself for that one being less than perfect and I said yes to the third date. And at the end of the fourth date, I was starting to get interested. And after the fifth date, I couldn't stop thinking about him. And after two and a half years, the best thing I ever did was say yes to another date.

There were guys who were iffy that I held onto after it started to seem like maybe a bad idea. That was never a wise decision.

How I think of it now is like this: Sometimes you think something might be good, but you're not sure. Sometimes you think something might be bad, but you're not sure. If you think this might be something bad, don't do it. If you're not sure yet whether it's something good, try it again. Go with your gut, and if your gut says you don't have enough information to make a decision, give him time to provide more information.
posted by katieinshoes at 6:39 PM on December 7, 2009 [4 favorites]


**even if I do agree to a second date and make plans with the guy, I tend to get really flaky and put it off.

*Frankly, these options are manipulation and not how humans should treat one another. If you really liked a boy would you want this done to you?


I'd agree, and I have felt bad about drawing things out when it happened; I'm bringing my experiences up so Anonymous can avoid wasting the guy's time if she's really not interested.

It can sometimes be hard to reconcile the idea that you "shouldn't be so picky" or that "everyone deserves a chance" with the vague gut feelings that it's not going to work out and that a second date seems like a chore, especially if one isn't used to dating or hasn't found anyone in a while. So, while it's best to be decisive and end things if one isn't feeling anything, but I can understand how a "sense of duty" might get in the way of your own instincts.
posted by jennyesq at 6:44 PM on December 7, 2009


But it feels dishonest to go on a second date when I feel such reservation like this.

Coming from someone who was just the other party on that second date:

Be. Honest. With. Him. Now. Not later. Now.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 6:46 PM on December 7, 2009 [1 favorite]


Unless you seriously actively dislike him or know, deep in your bones and strongly, that you can't stand him, I'd say go on one more date.

If it doesn't work, fine; if it does, awesome.

(It's not about duty, though - if you feel like it is, DON'T GO. Only go if you can maybe see having a fine-to-ok-to-good time.)
posted by tristeza at 6:50 PM on December 7, 2009


^ What kateinshoes said above is very true. If it wasn't *bad* and you generally had a good time but maybe didn't feel a spark, why not give it another shot? You're not getting married. But maybe keep it to a free/low-priced affair (walking in the park, etc.) to be fair to him.

We don't become BFF with people instantly, and it seems a lot to expect FiReWorKs and CHEMISTRY!! from a romantic partner right away, which is in some ways a more intimate relationship than a friendship. It's only thanks to my current boyfriend's persistence that we're going out. I was very, very uncertain I would have the time to commit to him and he seemed far more interested in me than I was in him, and I was certain I was just going to break his heart. But I realized that this fear was becoming something of a self-fulfilling prophecy for me, and I was going into relationships certain someone would get hurt--me or him. So I abandoned that idea. After a couple of dates, he really grew on me, and now I'm very glad we're together, and it's reminded me to always give people a chance.
posted by Dukat at 6:52 PM on December 7, 2009 [2 favorites]


My rule was that I would usually give someone a second chance unless they were skeevy, or set off my internal danger bell. Those guys are why I always carried cab fare, just in case.

But, if the second date was more of a call-back audition, rather than an "wow, really looking forward to seeing him" kinda thing, I always set the date up on my terms and paid. I realize that things have changed since the days when feathered hair was cool, and legwarmers were a fashion statement, but when I took the traditionally "male" role, it removed a lot of the stress factors, I think from both players.

It let me pick a place where I was comfortable, even if it might have been out of his price comfort zone, because I was picking up the check. (And I insisted on picking up the check. How a guy responded to a woman buying dinner was a test they had to be able to pass.)

Because I was comfortable, it let me spend more time getting to know him. Some of those times it meant I had a fabulous dinner, and realized that I liked the restaurant way better than I liked him, and a few times the second date let me realize how cool someone that I would have otherwise not known really was.

So,TLDR; if your internal alarm is going off...don't go. If it's just your internal "meh", then what can it hurt to set up the environment, buy him a nice steak (or tofu or whatever), and find out if it was just first date nerves?
posted by dejah420 at 6:55 PM on December 7, 2009 [4 favorites]


Also--don't do this because you feel obligated to give everyone a chance. Do it because you should give yourself another chance to find out if you like him. You said yes for a reason. Find out what that reason is for good or ill.
posted by Ironmouth at 6:59 PM on December 7, 2009 [1 favorite]


Speaking as a guy, I always assumed that the point of Date 1 was to make sure that I wasn't an axe murderer, and the point of Date 2 was to determine if I was actually worth getting involved with. There have been plenty of times when there were two dates and no third and I didn't feel "led on" or whatever.

But I also did my dating in a circle where Date 1 was coffee and Date 2 was a cheap-ass meal. If this guy's putting serious money or effort into showing you a good time, he might feel differently than I did.
posted by nebulawindphone at 7:21 PM on December 7, 2009 [3 favorites]


The point of those first couple dates is to figure out whether there's anything there. So there's nothing unfair about going on those dates while you're trying to figure it out. That's what they're for.

I also don't think there's anything wrong with not going on a second date with someone you feel "meh" about.

But yeah, if you decide you don't want to do it, I think it would be nuts to take him out to coffee just to tell him that. Not after ONE date! If it were me getting turned down and someone did that, I would be irked and wonder why they didn't just email me.
posted by Ashley801 at 7:24 PM on December 7, 2009


I've always taken "Let's do this again" at the end of a date is the same thing as saying "I'll call you" when you run into someone you haven't seen in awhile. It's a phrase that doesn't necessarily mean anything will actually come of it. This guy actually wants to go out on a 2nd date. He's asking. You're allowed to say no if you want.

Are you worried that he's more into you than you are into him? It sounds as if you initially were into seeing him again - were you just caught up in the moment of being on a date? Is there something more there that your post-date reflection hasn't picked up on? Or do you really consider him a waste of time right now? If the latter, than I'd turn down the 2nd date. If there's a possibility for any of the former, than I'd go on it.
posted by Stynxno at 7:30 PM on December 7, 2009 [1 favorite]


It's just better to get the bad news ("I'm just not that into you.") in person, rather than by phone or email.

Cool Papa Bell, how does one even set this up without implying that it is, if not a second date, at least a date and 1/4?
posted by yohko at 7:32 PM on December 7, 2009


If he calls/emails/IMs about specifically hanging out again, say "sure, what do you want to do? Although I gotta let you know that I didn't feel any romantic connection, what did you think?"

This way you're being direct and turning him down, but also not hurting his feelings by saying you never want to hang out with him again.

Chances are, after this, he'll either say "yea you're right, I felt nothing" just so he doesn't feel silly about you not being interested in him, and then depending on how the conversation goes, just hang out with him one more time, make it something quick, or you both might just agree to forget about it.
posted by KateHasQuestions at 8:01 PM on December 7, 2009 [1 favorite]


Don't go if you really don't want to, but I cannot get my head around the idea that there should be "no reservations" about anything after one date. You spent a couple hours with him, of course you're not sure if you're really interested.

It's not dishonest to go on another date. Agreeing two go on a second date doesn't mean anything other than agreement to go on a second date. Because it's only a second date, FFS.
posted by spaltavian at 8:27 PM on December 7, 2009


Cool Papa Bell, how does one even set this up without implying that it is, if not a second date, at least a date and 1/4?

"Hey, let's meet for coffee and chat."

Whether or not this implies something is beside the point. The point is, if it's not gonna happen, it's not gonna happen, and every second you spent dithering about it makes it worse. Trust me, meeting for coffee right after work is going to be so, so much better than the end of a second real date when hopes are up and emotions are high.

He gets his hair done, he spends a lot of money, he holds open doors, pulls out seats, does all that gallant shit, and then you lower the boom? His will likely have several reactions, all at the same time.

1) Really? Nawww, you're just messing with me.
2) What, you just decided right now? You bitch!
3) Fuck, I said something wrong. Tell me what it was; I promise not to do it again.
4) Ohmigod, I'm such a loser, I can't even handle a simple date. I'll go take out my frustrations at another time, possibly with another woman.
5) You're wrong. Let me convince you.

Just be honest. And sooner rather than later. Like I said, this is what adults do.
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 8:30 PM on December 7, 2009 [1 favorite]


If he calls/emails/IMs about specifically hanging out again, say "sure, what do you want to do? Although I gotta let you know that I didn't feel any romantic connection, what did you think?"

This way you're being direct and turning him down, but also not hurting his feelings by saying you never want to hang out with him again.


Oh, and don't do this. He won't feel all that great about the pity, firstly. He wants to go out with you again, so he either feels a romantic connection or feels the potential for one, which is what you are rejecting. You're not going to spare his feelings just because of a perfunctory willingness to go on the most awkward walk in the park ever.
posted by spaltavian at 8:33 PM on December 7, 2009


If he calls/emails/IMs about specifically hanging out again, say "sure, what do you want to do? Although I gotta let you know that I didn't feel any romantic connection, what did you think?"


I don't agree with this advice - I wouldn't know what to do if I were on the receiving end of this. Are you saying you want to be friends? Are you saying you're up for another date but are warning me that you don't like me that much?

His will likely have several reactions, all at the same time.

1) Really? Nawww, you're just messing with me.
2) What, you just decided right now? You bitch!
3) Fuck, I said something wrong. Tell me what it was; I promise not to do it again.
4) Ohmigod, I'm such a loser, I can't even handle a simple date. I'll go take out my frustrations at another time, possibly with another woman.
5) You're wrong. Let me convince you.


Anyone who has any of those reactions after two dates has major issues.
posted by pitseleh at 8:40 PM on December 7, 2009 [7 favorites]


If you do go on a second date, pay.

You are not at all responsible for his emotional state after one date. If he gets sad that you don't want to date him, well, okay. People get sad. Then they get happy again. That is life.
posted by kathrineg at 8:48 PM on December 7, 2009


Girl should act like adult. Girl should call boy and tell him the truth. Better yet, girl should meet boy in person, but on neutral ground, such as having coffee, and tell the truth. Girl should not wait any longer, or else girl risks letting bad situation become worse.

I don't think one date merits an in-person break-up. In fact, I'd be exquisitely embarrassed if someone I'd been out with only once thought that I was so fragile, rigid, old-fashioned, or into them that I needed something so formal as a sit-down. It seems like a response that's completely out of proportion to the situation, and moreover, it would be a waste of the boy's time.

Relatedly, I say you shouldn't go on the second date. Don't worry about backing out of an "agreement." That's silly--it's a date, not a business contract. I agree with the poster who said a date shouldn't feel like a chore, and the boy would thank you for backing out if he knew how hesitant you were to spend more time with him.
posted by coffeeflavored at 8:48 PM on December 7, 2009 [1 favorite]


Go on that second date.

Unless he treats the waitstaff like scum, is high as a kite, and/or ends the first date by getting drunk on beer and pissing in a bank drive through, give him that date.
posted by spinifex23 at 8:55 PM on December 7, 2009


I am a boy. Go. It is a win/win for you. Free food if no chemistry, if there is chemistry then there's chemistry AND free food. Give the guy another shot, go with an open mind. Some of us are great deep down but have no idea how to make a good first impression on a girl we actually admire/like/have feelings for.

If you don't feel it after two dates just tell him. He will not feel used if you call if off after 2 dates. After 5+ dates, yeah, he'll feel a little used.
posted by nokry56 at 9:37 PM on December 7, 2009


Disclaimer to my previous post. I am a college boy. Answered assuming you were a college girl. If you are older, I may be wrong. If you are younger - geez just go on dates - it is freaking high school.
posted by nokry56 at 9:41 PM on December 7, 2009


I haven't read all the responses here. I just wanted to say, the "dating" scene is a lot less.... umm.... official... in my country than it seems to be in the US (presuming that's where you are). People here just seem to get to know each other, if they get along, meet for coffee, drinks, in a group, or one on one, whatever. All very friendly-like and casual. If you're working towards being friends, or more, or nothing at all... it's all good. It's just about getting to know each other properly to work out where you stand with each other.

I think.

If you're unsure, but still have some interest in getting to know the guy better, why not just ask him along to something where you will have a few friends together. Then you can get to see what he's like with other people, and it will be less like a "date" and more just like a casual catch-up.
posted by Diag at 9:45 PM on December 7, 2009


I agree with whomever said about that first dates are to make sure that he's not a creepy weirdo axe murderer and second dates are to see if you might hit it off. There's nothing dishonest about going when you're only feeling "meh." Just pick a night when you don't normally have other plans and pay for half- an easy thing to do (provided you both drink) is to meet up at a bar- he buys a round, you buy a round, you have a chat, and then you decide if you're interested or not.
posted by emd3737 at 9:48 PM on December 7, 2009


Nthing yes for the second date and being candid after that.
posted by Paris Elk at 10:18 PM on December 7, 2009


I think it depends on why you aren't into him.

If it's personality related, I would give him a second date.

If it's lack of physical attraction, then, well, that's not really something you can fight. Let him know politely that you're no longer interested.
posted by schroedinger at 10:23 PM on December 7, 2009


> cool popa bell.
Personally I think your suggestion is absurd.. We are talking about 1 date. its not like she promised to have his childrenm. if you are not into it I'd just send a txt message saying - sorry nto into you that way.. and be done with uit.
posted by mary8nne at 4:18 AM on December 8, 2009 [1 favorite]


The last "first date" I was on, we didn't click romantically. His first impression of me was that was that I was a bit "edgy" (I have ADHD) and mine was that he was too reserved (he'd been burned on the dating scene before). We kept lines of communication open.

We'll be married 3 years in March.


For every couple like this, there's a couple who never would have gone out if one of them hadn't recently been turned down by a third party.
posted by Jaltcoh at 7:45 AM on December 8, 2009 [1 favorite]


I am also an example of someone who was pretty sure they wouldn't be giving the guy a second date because I felt "meh", but then decided "What the hell? OK, I'll give this guy one more shot."

We got engaged a week ago.
posted by Windigo at 8:27 AM on December 8, 2009


Some food for thought: On of the happiest married couples I know only got that way because they had a "Second First Date".

It can't hurt to go. Besides, is your social calendar that backed up that having a second date carries the kind of opportunity cost cited by Jaltcoh above? For 99% of people, that answer is no.
posted by Citrus at 9:53 AM on December 8, 2009


Besides, is your social calendar that backed up that having a second date carries the kind of opportunity cost cited by Jaltcoh above? For 99% of people, that answer is no.

Oh, the opportunity cost arises all the time in the dating world simply because people's time and attention is finite. It's not restricted to amazing, rich, beautiful people. It's a perfectly mundane, everyday phenomenon.

For instance, when my girlfriend and I had our first couple dates, I was thereby deciding to focus on her and not date a certain other woman. It's not that I had such a jam-packed social calendar, but I simply think it's a bad practice to have too many dates lined up in any given period of time. That other woman might well have been freed up to go out with a guy she would have passed over otherwise. By the same token, when I went on that first date with my girlfriend, I felt free to do so because another woman had recently turned me down for a third date. I'm very glad I was turned down instead of strung along for a few more lackluster dates -- otherwise, I might not have chosen to focus my attention on my now-girlfriend. At best, I might have paid attention to her later, at which point she would likely have moved on to someone else.

Now, I'd love to think I'm in the top 1% of most attractive mates, but all of the above makes sense even assuming that I'm average or even below average.

So, go on the second date if you like him enough to spend your time on him when you could be spending time on someone else (maybe someone you click with enough to not need to consult a website about whether to see him again). But if you live in a reasonably populous area and you have limited free time, you'll always pay opportunity costs by pursuing a certain opportunity. That's why it makes sense to have high standards for whether an opportunity is worth pursuing rather than routinely going on dates with people you don't find very appealing simply because it might conceivably lead to marriage.
posted by Jaltcoh at 5:11 PM on December 8, 2009


Casting a vote for going on the second date. The potential benefits of it going well would outweigh the benefits of freeing up that night for something else, and there's minimal risk.

Even if you don't see any romantic potential, if you at least enjoyed yourself the first time, it can't hurt to go a second time. And it gives him a chance to assess things further as well. I'm pretty sure he'd be understanding if you made it clear after this one that you weren't interested in continuing seeing each other. That's how it goes.

There was something that made you say yes instead of no or "Ill think about it," so who knows, maybe the second date will be even better than the first. Can't find out if you don't go.
posted by TheSecretDecoderRing at 11:06 PM on December 8, 2009


Do it. Like a few others, I went on a second date, weeks after the first and after having found excuses every time boy asked me to do something again, and then went on a third. I still wasn't "sure". He was too x and not enough xx. Pffft. I was a fool. In my case (and I'm not at all saying this is your situation) I had this mental list of things that no one person could have ticked. I was afraid of being hurt again, and so didn't let anyone through. Until this boy, but only because he kept asking and asking (and not in creepy ways). We've been together about 6 months now, and I can't imagine my life without him.

Go on a second date with boy. At the worst, you have a decent time, like you did the first time, and find a new friend.
posted by monkey!knife!fight! at 3:45 AM on December 9, 2009


Well, as far as opportunity cost goes, you can always do what my (now)-husband did on our first date--he scheduled it a bit earlier in the evening, near Bowlmor, so that he could end the date early and go bowl with his friends (and some other ladies) if things didn't work out.

I don't know, I think life is too short to spend much time dating people who don't turn your crank, physically. I don't know if that's what's going on here, but you really shouldn't underestimate the value of finding your partner attractive. It even makes fighting better!
posted by kathrineg at 2:10 PM on December 9, 2009


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