That First Date
“Will he like me? What should I wear? Does my breath smell?”
Seriously, going on a first date can be a bit of a challenge. This is particularly true for gay men who are new to the dating scene or have been off the market for an extended period of time.
After consulting with a number of gay men who were formerly single and now long-term partnered … plus a few therapists who specialize in couples counseling. Here are some gay dating red flags:
10 Red Flags for Gay Men on a First Date
Disclaimer: Not every point here may apply to your situation and is not set in stone. Think of these as general guidelines as opposed rigid rules.
1. He just got out of a long term relationship
What is important is this – the amount of time he has been out of his same sex relationship. If he was in a five year relationship and is now out on the market six months after the breakup, he is very likely not going to be emotionally available or emotionally capable of a real relationship again for some time. And if he still lives with his ex and is claiming, “We still live together but are not in a relationship” or anything like that, you need to run.
Here are some more tips under this point:
- He says you remind him of his “ex” several times during first date
- He talks about his ex the entire date or calls you by his ex’s first name (run!)
- He tells you he wants a serious relationship (remember, he just broke up)
- He is just coming on too strong and acting like you two are a serious couple.
2. He’s checking out other guys and flirting
And here is another possibility …he just isn’t into you. Instead of manning up and telling you that, he is flirting with other dudes. This point sucks and not something you want to hear but checking out other guys on a first date really is not a good sign for something long term.
Other tips under this red flag during the first date:
- He keeps going on Facebook or twitter or some other dating app
- He talks about how hot another guy is on your first date
3. He wants to go to a bar
Some other tips under this red flag:
- He tells you he meets all of his dates at bars
- He seems to crave attention and needs an audience
- Most of his pictures are of him at clubs and yeah … bars
4. He drinks too much too fast
Look, there is nothing wrong with a few drinks on a first date however, when it gets to the point that he needs to get bombed in order to function, he’s likely not going to be a good match for you. Same holds true if he shows up at your first date stoned. Run like hell.
Other under this red flag:
- He wants you to get high with him
- He talks a lot about how much he “parties” or “parTays”
5. He has less than 1 year of sobriety
This is not a hard and fast rule but is generally encouraged. The reasons are plentiful but the primary one is that the guy needs to be focusing on his recovery. A debatable “red flag” perhaps but one that cannot be ignored.
6. He is rude to wait staff and others
If the guy you are out on a first date with is treating people like crap, how do you think he will treat you down the road?
Other tips under this red flag:
- Seems to have a quick temper and goes off on small stuff
- Does not say “thank you” or “please” when speaking to you or others
- Orders people around like he owns the place
7. He says he is straight acting
There is a difference between being masculine and “acting” hiding who you are. And what exactly does “acting straight mean” At its core, it’s called internalized homophobia when a gay dude says this.
There are many gay men who are masculine and their sexual orientation is not readily obvious.
With that shared, if your first date makes it a point to say he “acts straight” and goes out of his way to identify as straight to others around him, you really need to carefully consider if this person is for you.
Other points under this red flag:
- He emphasizes his religious beliefs that are known to be anti-gay.
- He identifies as a die hard republican and supports anti-gay candidates
- He shares that he is “confused” about his sexuality (run!)
8. He is looking to hook up immediately before or after the first date
Other tips under this red flag:
- During the goodnight kiss his hand reaches towards the southern regions
- He talks too much about bedroom positioning (top drawer/bottom drawer)
- He can’t look you in your eyes when you kiss (umm, yeah that is a red flag)
9. He talks too much about himself
Other tips under this red flag:
- He asks very little about you during your first date
- He makes you feel like you are being qualified for a car loan
- He starts to immediately playing the game of materialistic comparisons
- Name dropping of celebrities or well connected people in town
- He’s looking waaaay too much at his reflection in his stirring spoon
10.You ignore these red flags and others because you are hooked on his look
Too many get hooked on the look and find themselves in impossible, painful, one-sided and one way relationships. Pay attention to how his physical appearance causes you to feel. If you come away from that date feeling “less than” or “ugly” then you are the person who is not ready to be in a relationship.
Other potential red flags:
- You won’t talk about yourself because you feel “less than”
- You feel the need to brag or go out of your way to impress him
- You’ve dated his type before and you keep repeating the cycle
- Can you name some other red flags that you ignore?
Have you found the right one, or are you still searching?
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