By: Jess Downey, Copy Cutie
Fail: A few months ago I planned a date with a guy from an online dating site and we exchanged numbers “just in case.” When date day rolled around he texted, saying something came up and he wouldn’t make it. While I was disappointed, I understood and told him it was fine, offering some other free dates to reschedule. Since he wasn’t sure when he’d be free, he wanted to play it by ear. I was less than enthused with that idea and tried casually nudging him to lock down a date. Again, he played the “I’m not sure” card. After some debate, he finally said, “Let’s just say Thursday for now.” But when Thursday came around, it was the same story. We again went back and forth until I finally told him I’d pass.
Fab: We’ve all been there — you have a date coming up and something tragic comes along and throws a rift in your plans. When reasoning is legitimate, it’s perfectly acceptable to postpone for another time. But it’s easy to turn an attempt at rescheduling into an obvious declaration of “not interested.”
Avoid phrases like, “Let’s plan something next week” or “Let’s play it by ear.” And definitely prevent making your date beg for a plan. When you’re vague and give an indefinite day, you’re really just saying you aren’t all that into him or her or are simply keeping this person on the back burner, just in case. If you’re truly interested, that’s not the impression you want to give.
Instead, lead with a polite apology. You don’t need to grovel but show some compassion for the situation. Then suggest an alternative date — one that’s definitely doable, even if it’s not until the following week. This shows that you not only feel bad about having to rain check but really do want to see the person.
Be mindful of the person’s schedule. Don’t be irritated if your date isn’t free on the day you suggest. He or she might have already rearranged other things to plan the first date, so be prepared to possibly juggle things around your own schedule.
Remember: Sometimes life throws you a curve ball, but make sure you’re aiming to hit a homerun and head on a date rather than foul out and sit bench side.