July 10th, 2013 by Josie

You Don’t Look Like Your Photo…. How to Escape a Bad Date


So you’ve spent the last few hours deciding what to wear and dreaming up romantic scenarios in your head. You’re ready to spend the evening staring dreamily across the table into your new love’s eyes, except there’s one problem: it gets to an hour in and you’ve realised, quite simply, that your date couldn’t be less up your street. So, without further ado, here’s our tongue-in-cheek guide to escaping from that terrible date – you can thank us afterwards!

The ol’ phone call ‘emergency’
It’s an old classic but it never fails. Pop to the toilet to surreptitiously ‘powder your nose’ and make sure to bring your phone along with you. Once you’re in the safety of a cubicle, text one of your trustworthy friends and arrange for them to call you in ten minutes time with some sort of fictitious emergency that you simply must attend to straight away. Even if it’s obvious why you’re really leaving, at least it’ll put the message across that you’re not interested!

The secret agent
Here’s one that you could really run away with. If you’re feeling creative and things aren’t going well, have some fun and fabricate some sort of deeply messy and unappealing personal life. Whether it’s an imaginary husband or a crazy ex-boyfriend, it should be enough to make sure that they never call you again. Hey, you could even pull a Chandler and pretend you’re moving to Yemen – awkward if you bump into them in the supermarket, though.

The illness that came out of nowhere
Another classic get-out clause that’s easy to whip out in times of need: fake an illness! Try the classic ‘something you ate’ line or simply feign having had too much wine, here’s your chance to test out your acting skills and pretend you’re eight years old again, trying to get a day off school. Don’t worry if you’re acting skills are barely Oscar-worthy because everyone recognises an illness-fakeout, making it an easy way to let your date down gently and spare their feelings. It’s an oldie but a goodie!

The double bluff
If you really can’t face the idea of leaving your date out in the cold by going home, then it might be worth double-bluffing them with the sort of demeanour that leaves them wanting to be the one that escapes. In other words, try your hand at being uninterested, obnoxious or downright unmatched for them. This might sound a bit mean but the plan here is to make them feel like they had a lucky escape, sparing their pride in the long run!

The disguise
If your fake husband and contagious stomach flu haven’t put your date off, then there’s one last thing you could try – but this one takes a bit of pre-date preparation. Again, sneak to the bathroom – this time with your bag in tow – and don the disguise that you thoughtfully brought with you beforehand. Whether a pair of dark glasses, a change of clothes or a full-on wig, it’ll need to be good enough to sneak back past your date and out of the front door. And if they cotton on and call out your name…run, run for the hills!

Josie is a writer living in London. She enjoys coffee, travelling and writing about the perils of dating.

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