When it comes to relationships, we all have lines that must not be crossed. There are several offenses that are early signs of a doomed date. I recently posted a question on my Protocol School of Texas Facebook page, asking readers about their number one dating deal breaker. Both men and women shared dating experiences from the comical to the downright rude on both my page and by email. One man said his date pulled out a questionnaire over dinner and began to ask him personal questions. Another shared that her date texted her from his car, letting her know he had arrived and was ready for her to come outside.
Facebook friends generously offered a lengthy list of offenses such as:
- People who are unkind to wait staff
- Those who seem lazy
- Poor hygiene, bad breath, and smokers
- Dates who brag about themselves the entire night
- Those who talked about their exes – both negatively and those still in love
- Bad manners and poor grammar
Here are six Dating Etiquette takeaways:
- First impressions count. Match.com reveals that 51% of people begin imagining a future together – or not – on the first date. Immediate deal breakers include lack of social skills, smoking, and hygiene issues.
- Deference for self and others. The premise of etiquette is courtesy. In fact, Match.com found that respect is the number one priority for 100% of women and 98% of men surveyed.
- Observation. If your date seems like they are not putting forth the effort, or worse, they truly are putting their best foot forward and still not meeting expectations, it may be a sign that there is an incompatibility issue.
- Attention to appearance.
Take the commonly cited comment of hygiene and bad teeth (meaning unclean, not crooked). For most, there is little incentive to get involved with another person who lacks the motivation to brush their teeth, bathe or otherwise meet their own basic needs.
- Restraint. There were other key takeaways from the Singles in America study: guys, refrain from sending a sexy selfie, and ladies, texting more than once before receiving a reply is the number one text turn-off for men.
- Core values. One last noteworthy finding from Match.com bodes well for the future of relationships. According to the survey, Dr. Justin Garcia states, “Today, we see single Americans who are interested in finding partners with whom they can have real, loving relationships and deeper connections on an emotional level as opposed to what looks good on paper.”
The overall message when meeting someone new: take notice of your signals communicated when meeting, greeting, mixing and mingling, both in the dating world, and in everyday life.
For more of my etiquette tips, check out my blog here on The Huffington Post.