Bad Dates: How to Escape (Nicely)

bad dates

Picture the scene: it’s a first date. You’ve glammed up; teeth buffed to gleaming, skin taut and glowing, eyes a-popping, hair quaffed, doused in alluring scents and… across from you sits your date. They seemed perfectly fine over text, but now they sit before you: slouching like a bag of old spuds, staring ponderously at their fingernails, and occasionally twitching. You need to get out. Good lord, you need to get out.

Another ‘bad dates’ scenario: it’s your second meeting. You got along nicely the first time, shared a kiss on the doorstep, and now you’re taking a stroll through the park. You’re beginning to get more comfortable. You laugh together watching a squirrel. Maybe there are some swans. And then you mention your holiday plans and they, from nowhere, say something breathtakingly xenophobic. Klaxon: time to bail.

How about this: third date. You know what this could mean; you’re making eyes, you’re biting your lower lip at them in what you desperately hope is a sexy fashion. They announce they’re just nipping off to uncork the second bottle of wine. They stand up from the sofa, wheeze a little with the effort, and in that single, fateful moment of exertion, the air is split by a monstrous, high pitched bugling. They apologise but you wave it away; it is natural, it is human! However, once they have left the room: no, it is not okay, it is not acceptable to do that and smile and continue the evening. No. You must flee. Only… how?

Fortunately, EliteSingles has the answers you crave. Over the next one thousand words or so we shall brief you on that most delicate yet urgent of matters: how to escape a variety of bad dates (nicely).

Wholly Untested Ways to End Bad Dates

The ‘Truth’

Okay, we’ll start with this one, because it’s not really a method of escaping bad dates, it’s more… well, just being honest. Yes, beauty is truth and truth is beauty, and it’ll set you free and whatnot, but before it sets you free it’ll require you to stare straight into the vacant mug of your boring date and tell them that they are just rubbish and you’re going home. If you have the stomach for it, be our guest. Just don’t say we didn’t warn you.

The ‘Phone Call’

You get a solid zero for creativity if you opt for this method, but although it’s by far the least anecdote-friendly means of bailing on a yawn-inspiring date, it’s a cliché for a reason: it works. But look, if you’re going to get your friend to call you mid-date with some ‘crazy news!’, you might as well go big – so big that your date wouldn’t dare question your story. Think: kitchen exploded. Think: long lost sibling. Think: stepmother in motorway police chase.

The ‘Mystery Illness’

Difficult to pull off, but entirely plausible. You can lay the groundwork at the start of the date; upon arrival, greet your date and mention, as gaily and casually as possible, that you feel close to death. Then, depending on how well the evening fares, you either make a miraculous recovery and perk right up, or pepper your witticisms with groans of pain, slide down your seat a few inches, and finally declare that you are going home to quarantine yourself. From your date. Forever.

The ‘Vague Plans’

Similar to the ‘mystery illness’ method, except probably easier to pull off because you don’t have to borderline fake your own death at the dinner table. At the start of the date, mention a friend/family member/pet you are due to spend time with later that evening, thus giving you an ‘out’. You can even name a specific time, thereby putting a guaranteed get-out on your date. Of course, if things go well, the other half of your plans could, of course, cancel on you, suddenly and conveniently freeing up your evening.

The ‘I’d Better Go, I Have To Wake Up Tomorrow’

It’s not a lie! You do have to wake up tomorrow! Everyone does! That is the foundation of existence! Declaring that you have to get up in the morning is completely true and accurate and fair, and nobody could possibly have any qualms with it as a general statement. No lies on your conscience, no hard feelings for your date. Wonderful.

Cautionary Interlude: In the interest of you not soiling your reputation as an upstanding citizen forevermore, we would like to clarify that to enact any escape plan detailed hereafter is entirely your own call and you probably you shouldn’t do it. Probably.

The ‘Self Sabotage’

With the other options detailed above, it would be a truly baffling decision to opt for this method, but whatever: if you are giddy with anticipation at the thought of your date’s imminent absence, hasten their departure by acting so heinously that they have no choice but to flee the building. Bore them to tears, gross them out; choose whatever angle works for you. Shun cutlery. Sneeze incessantly. Speak in a grating high pitched voice for their entire evening. Shriek occasionally without ever acknowledging it. Start a brawl with another diner over the salt shaker.

In short: be such a catastrophic weirdo that your date can’t bear to spend a second longer in your presence. Just make sure they pay their share of the bill before they high-tail it out of the restaurant.

The ‘Proposal’

Propose to them. Yeah, you read that right. Propose. Get down on one knee, declare your undying love, and ask for their hand in matrimony. Tell them that, although you have only just met, their charismatic presence has set your soul on fire and suddenly the thought of an existence without them by your side is too painful to bear. Take their hand, weep a little if you’re one of those talented few who can cry on demand, and ask them to be yours. And they will say no, and they will be very uncomfortable, and the date will be over. Hooray.

Unless of course they say yes, in which case, sorry, but you will have to marry them.

The ‘Climb Out Of The Bathroom Window And Sprint Breathlessly Into The Night’

Look, in a world of ghosting and benching and all those horrid dating trends, you don’t really want to be doing this. We’re all adults. We know how to conduct ourselves. We are all, broadly speaking, reasonable, decent people.

That said. If you’ve suddenly found yourself stifling a rapid-fire series of yawns as your inexplicably riled-up date lurches into yet another rant about their manager’s cruel oversight of all their hard work this quarter, it’s probably forgivable for you to excuse yourself, ease open the bathroom window, and clamber out into the night. Ignore the confused yells that echo down the street after you as you gallop away; they’re likely completely unrelated. You’re not a bad person. It’s perfectly fine. You’re not a bad person.

Do Not Despair: A Parting Message of Hope

Yes, bad dates do occur on occasion, but that is not cause for concern. If you have recently faux-guffawed your way through a lackluster evening with the kind of date who makes a loaf of brown bread look like a barrel of laughs, worry not. The road to lasting love is not always smooth, and the best attribute any love-seeking single can have is a sense of humour. And a bullet-proof exit plan.

And if you’re tired of bad dates with loutish oiks, and are looking to meet a partner who shares your interests, finds your quirks adorable, and has their life in order? Friend, rejoice, for you are already staring into the pixilated face of your saviour: join EliteSingles!

About the author: Dan Hackett

Dan is an editor for EliteSingles.

See more articles written by Dan Hackett