Is there anything more nerve-wracking than a looming first date with someone new? It is an event that is both thrilling and terrifying. The struggle to make a good first impression on a potential suitor never fails to flood the mind with a variety of questions.

Some of them are practical: it’s 2015, should we split the check? Some are delicate: should I invite them inside? Some are inane: should I tell them about my fear of elevators?

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And the list goes on. If you want to ensure that there’s going to be a second date, it can feel like every little thing you bring up could send the other person running for the hills. I mean, we want them to learn about us as people, yes, but we don’t want to shower them with all the bleak stuff about our lives just yet, you know?

Luckily, if you’ve already hit it off and are cruising through conversation sans difficulties, you’re probably going to be fine. But just as a friendly reminder – there are a couple of things that you should 100% never, ever do on a first date unless you’re trying desperately to get out of a second one.

Talking about your ex

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Don’t. Do. This. This is not the time to rant about how your ex-girlfriend “just didn’t get” you. It shows that you haven’t moved on yet, and is super off-putting. Force yourself to shut up and talk about how much you love The Wire or whatever instead.

Talking exclusively about yourself

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Do people know that they’re doing this? Because it’s legitimately awful and eye-roll worthy. It doesn’t matter if you’re the most interesting person on the planet, if you don’t occasionally shut the fuck up and engage with the person sitting across from you, you’re never going to get a second date. And you probably don’t deserve one.

Being rude to the waiter/bartender/anyone

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Stop. Do not pass go. Do not collect $200. Seriously. Being a dick to someone just trying to do their job is uncalled for and a massive red flag for deeper issues. Until you acquire some basic manners, please do everyone else a favor and remove yourself from the dating pool.

Using your phone constantly

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Why do people think this is okay? Unless you’re texting emojis to Dominos to get you and your date a large pizza or showing them a picture of your cat, put away the goddamn iPhone. Checking your friend’s drunken snapchats can wait.

Making ignorant statements about sensitive/important topics 

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From vaguely sexist comments to Donald Trump-level declarations about race and gender, there is nothing worse on a first date than the moment where it dawns on you that the person sipping on an overpriced drink in front of you is kind of awful.

On the plus side, now that they’ve shown their true colors, you can feel good about never going on a second date with them and forever ignoring their texts.

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In short, to get a second date, you’re gonna want to aim to not be a terrible person on the first one.

So, do you think you can manage that?

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