Southern Belle in Training

Fashion, Travel & Lifestyle Blog || Est. 2012 || Virginia Beach, VA

July 8, 2019

Relationship Monday: Things to Remember After a BAD First Date.

     Time for another Relationship Monday post! Thank you all for your kind comments and DMs after last Monday's post about using dating apps. It is so fun to hear y'all's thoughts whenever I share my own views and experiences on dating and singleness, and I'm so glad last week's post resonated with a lot of y'all! Today I'm chatting about something that can often happen when using dating apps (or not as well!) - having a bad first date, and things to do and remember after one.

Photo by Kate Greer {originally from this post}

     Ah, bad dates. They're awkward, uncomfortable, disappointing, frustrating... I could go on! There's almost an 100% chance they will happen for you at some point if you're using dating apps these days, but of course they also happen with meeting dating partners off of apps and out in the regular world too. I have had so many bad dates over the years. My very first date in high school was absolutely awful- and sometimes I laugh to myself that it jinxed me for my dating life in years to come. (About my very first date ever- he showed up to pick me up wearing an oversized polo shirt with gym shorts in a contrasting color, and drove me to the movies in a minivan... yup.)

     I've had bad dates from dating apps, I've had bad dates from other means. Actually one of the worst dates that I've ever had was from a blind date/set-up from an old coworker of mine! I've had bad dates where guys made rude comments about my career path, bad dates where someone's definition of PDA is pretty weird (like the guy who aggressively rubbed my knee on a first date?), bad dates where the lack of chemistry is so bad that I start to fall asleep, bad dates where the guy makes an incredibly disgusting racist comment, and bad dates where the guy doesn't offer to pay (in the case of those last two things, they happened to be the same guy!) I've had so many awful dating experiences over the years that I've had multiple friends tell me I need to write a book or doing a podcast sharing all the stories, ha!

     So how do you manage to get past an awful date and still keep moving forward with a positive attitude about dating? It's all about perspective. This is one relationship topic that I feel very qualified to give advice on- so here we go! 😉

     *Remember that a lack of chemistry with someone isn't your fault: This one is so easy to forget yet so important to remember. Dating is tough. Very, very few people end up falling in love and having a happy ever after with the first person they ever date. Very cliche but very true saying, you really do have to kiss a lot of frogs before you find your prince! That means there almost certainly will be people you go out with that you don't have romantic chemistry with. That doesn't mean there's something wrong with you or them necessarily, it just means they aren't your person! Chemistry is a natural and beautiful thing. If you have to think too hard about if you want to see someone again- it's probably not there, and that's okay. No need to overthink things- onto the next!

     *Think about things to do differently on your next first date: Maybe the chemistry is there and you do want to see the person for another date, but they didn't feel the same about you. That's always a little bit of a blow, but nothing to get too upset over. This actually might be a good time to analyze your behavior on the date in a constructive way. For example, in the past I've divulged things that probably shouldn't be said the first time I'm getting to know someone. Such as in college when I shared the detailed story of how I got bedbugs when I studied abroad... yep, glad I know now not to keep sharing that on first dates! 😂Also, bringing up an ex or past relationship is probably not the best idea to share on a first date, and can be a big turn-off. Don't obsess over things you said or did on a date, but it can be helpful to spend a few minutes analyzing it in a constructive way.

     *Focus on the positives (or if there really aren't any, the humor in it): Even if a date is terrible, there are a usually a few positives to focus on after the fact! Such as the fact you may have gotten treated coffee or dinner, the fact you put yourself out there for a date with someone new, a great outfit you styled for the date, etc. If there are absolutely no positives whatsoever and it was truly the worst date on earth... well, give it a little time and then it will probably become a great funny story!

     *Have other plans on the calendar for the week or weekend of the date: This is my biggest tip of the whole post! Always have other fun plans to look forward to later in the day after the date, or the next day. If a first date is your only plan for the weekend and it doesn't go well, that could end up being kind of a crappy weekend. But if you have a not so great first date on Saturday afternoon, and then have fun plans with friends or family Saturday night or Sunday, the whole weekend won't be ruined, and soon the date will just be a distant memory.

     *The question of "Should I still see them again?": A truly awful first date probably won't have you wanting to go out with that person again, but what about seeing someone again after a so-so first date: yay or nay? A lot of my friends and people I've met have mixed views on this, and I've also heard this question discussed many times in different dating podcasts and books. My personal opinion? Every time that I've gone on a second date with someone where the first date wasn't too great, it hasn't gotten better and has been a waste of time. While I don't quite believe in love at first sight, I do thing there should be strong attraction there on a first date. Physical attraction yes, but more importantly attraction to their personality and the way you felt getting to know them! If you don't leave a first date excited to see this person again, don't bother with a second date. That's my personal thought on this! I have friends that feel differently though- and some who it took a good few dates to get to know the person and then they realized they really did like them, so I guess that can work too!

     I shared a few of my past bad date stories in this older blog post if you need a few laughs about this topic! I'd also love to hear your thoughts on what you do after a really bad first date- or of course any bad date stories of your own! My friend Nicole from What Nicole Wore shared what is possibly the most horrifying yet hilarious bad date story of all time in this post on her blog- it's a must read!

     God Bless,

     xoxo Annaliese


  1. I think remembering that a lack of chemistry is no reflection on you is crucial. When I was dating, I'd get back from dates and feel terrible because there was no spark. 3 dates in a row like that, and you start to question yourself! Eventually I found my amazing husband, and there was a spark right away. Don't ignore your intuition - it's a sign there's someone better out there for you :)

  2. These are such great reminders and I wish my younger self would have known this. I would always think it was my fault, but you're absolutely right!

  3. Oh gosh thank you for the shoutout haha. It definitely can be tough to remember in the moment, especially when multiple first dates are bad but I always try to see the humor in it.

    Nicole from What Nicole Wore

  4. Thank God I am married. I don't really have dating horror stories. I have tons of funny stories however.

  5. Wow, it sure sounds like you've been on some interesting dates! As I am still with my high school sweetheart 6 years on, I've never really been on a "first date" before, but the stories you hear these days are insane. You should definitely note them down for future reference, because if anything they'll be interesting anecdotes for you to laugh at down the road. Even though I can't relate, I really do like the message behind this post, and am sure it's going to help a lot of people who are currently dating.

  6. awe these are great tips! I always looked at dating as a new adventure and just always told myself, "do it for the story." I ended up having so much fun dating always as a result and I love my husband but i tell him, I miss going on first dates with rando just because it was so ridiculous and funny to reflect on haha

  7. These are all great tips for those that are dating. Hopefully you have better dates in the future :)

  8. Thank you so much. As much as we hate bad dates.. they happen. And sometimes it's not the fault of anyone. You may not have the chemistry. Also yes, best to go out or do something relaxing after that to take your mind off it.


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