Communication Problems

Turnoffs in Dating Conversations by Lisa

Avoid⁤ These 9 Conversation Mistakes When Dating ⁢Your Matches ‍& Crushes

Dating in its early stages ⁢can be⁤ a minefield.

While it can be thrilling and filled with joy, until you truly know someone, it’s hard to⁣ predict⁢ what might make them lose interest.

Whether⁣ it’s your first chat after⁣ matching ⁤on⁣ a dating app or your second or third face-to-face date, there’s plenty of opportunity ​to turn someone off by saying or doing the wrong thing.

And,‍ according to those who⁢ date men,‌ it often seems ⁤like men ‌are eager to put their foot in their mouths.

RELATED: What Not to Say on a First Date

To help you steer clear of⁣ common dating conversation faux pas, we’ve consulted with dating experts ‌and ‌people who date men. Here’s their advice:

Dwelling on the Past

Getting over ⁢an ex can be tough, but when you’re⁣ trying to date someone new, ⁢your ex should rarely, if ever,​ be a topic of conversation,‌ especially on a first date. ⁣

Whether you’re speaking positively or ⁢negatively about your ex, it’s hard for someone new to feel good about the potential connection if you keep emphasizing that you haven’t fully moved on.

“Comparing oneself to an ⁢ex and highlighting their flaws is⁤ not conducive to building a healthy connection,” says Rachel Goldberg, LMFT, founder ​of Rachel ​Goldberg Therapy in Los Angeles, CA. “For instance, saying,⁤ ‘I’m glad⁤ to see you keep your living⁢ room clean because my ex was always messy’ creates unnecessary comparison and negativity.”

Discussing your ​ex early ⁢on is ‌a definite no-no, agrees Laura Windsor, founder of Laura Windsor Etiquette Academy.

“Especially when it’s about how great or awful⁣ their ​exes were,” she​ explains. “‘My ex-wife was ‌a really awful person,’ ‘My last girlfriend stole my​ dog. She was a ⁢total freak’. It gives ⁢the impression that the date is ‍being​ compared to past⁣ flames… It also says a lot about⁣ him.”

RELATED: Common Relationship Red Flags

Getting Sexual⁤ Too Soon

“[It’s such a turn-off] ⁣ when they suddenly make it overly sexual! So​ many men open up ‍conversations ⁤in such a gross and ⁣demeaning way. – Tori, 24

“Being overly sexual via ⁣text before establishing a solid relationship⁣ foundation,”⁣ Goldberg‍ says, is a​ huge​ and ‍all-too common dating turnoff.

“For ⁣instance,” she says,​ “engaging in sexting prior to the⁣ first meeting or discussing how aroused they are just looking at their⁣ Tinder pics” ⁢are examples ⁢of ways guys cross that ⁣line — and⁣ while it’s likely more of ​a concern for women,⁤ it can be a​ turnoff regardless of gender.

“[One thing I think is a turn-off?] Commenting on my body or​ appearance soon ​into the conversation. Similarly, immediately ⁣discussing⁢ sex.” – Josh, 31

Ultimately, sex ⁣is a sensitive and potentially⁣ uncomfortable topic for many⁢ people, who don’t feel comfortable ‍engaging in sexually charged conversations ​with relative strangers. Unless you’re on a hookup-oriented app, taking your time before getting to that kind of conversation is usually the right move. ⁣

Being Overconfident

Confidence is ⁤often seen as a desirable and sexy trait. But ‍there’s a line between confidence and arrogance, and many men confidently stride over to ​the wrong side. ​

“[It’s such a turn-off when they’re] ⁤ unable‌ to put themselves ​in others’ shoes! Assuming⁣ their way is the ⁢‘right’ way ‌or generally not understanding why someone ‍does something differently.” – Victoria, 34

This could manifest as mansplaining, playing “devil’s advocate,” correcting the other person or just⁣ trying to dominate the conversation in any way. ‌Remember, ⁤it’s a date, not a ‍debate.

Being ​Overly‍ Boastful

One step beyond being overly ‍confident is spending a lot of time actively talking about how great you are. Many men seem to treat a date like a job interview,⁣ where they’re there to sell ⁤themselves as a potential candidate for sex and/or romance.⁢

“[One thing I think is a turn-off?] Talking about themselves (nonstop), video games, and ambitions not accompanied by action. – Nicole, 30

But this mindset completely ignores⁣ the ⁢reality that⁢ the person you’re ⁣talking to⁢ is not being paid for ​their time screening you; they’re trying to spend time interacting with you, and the one way that can be fun for ‍them ⁢is if you help ⁢make it an enjoyable⁣ experience.

RELATED: ⁢ Common Mistakes‌ Men Make in the First ⁤Few Dates

“Someone who talks incessantly ‍about himself” is ​a definite turnoff, ‍says Windsor. “It’s interesting ⁣to a point then it just becomes boring.”

Even if you’re more successful than ​the ​other person, good conversation ⁤is about give-and-take, not a one-way street. ⁢

“[It’s such a turn-off when they’re] low-key trying to show‌ off their intellect,​ winding up not talking with me but​ at me‍ (bonus⁤ points ⁣if it’s braindead manosphere stuff). ​- M, 37

“While confidence in a male is attractive, ⁢constantly needing ‍to prove ​it by boasting about workouts, vacations, or material possessions reeks of desperation⁣ for admiration,” ⁤Goldberg notes.

Being Too Focused on Money

On ⁣that note, numbers in particular can​ be a sticking point.

It makes sense ⁤— lots of ⁤the​ way masculine success is conceived of​ in contemporary culture is through the lens of finances. How much do you make? What expensive ‌products do you own? What’s your ​net worth?

But​ while these ⁤might be great fodder for conversations among similarly ambitious friends, ‍in ⁤a dating context,⁣ they’re often‌ seen as ‌a distinct turnoff.

RELATED: Most Common Money Fights in Relationships, Revealed

“Bragging about how much you earn, your house or your car⁣ particularly if it’s to ‌impress ⁤your date,” says Windsor. “Asking about a date’s income is also inappropriate. Those who⁣ possess ‍good qualities and assets don’t⁣ feel the need to⁤ brag. It’s the ones who talk a lot who have something to hide.”

On the flip side, talking about money doesn’t ⁢have⁤ to be a brag for ​it to feel iffy to a⁤ date.

“Discussing prices in either extreme can send off the wrong message,” ⁢says ‌Goldberg.

For instance, ⁤she notes, “complaining about the high prices ‍on the menu” could convey “a sense of ​excessive frugality.”

Being ​Overly⁣ Negative

People typically want to associate a date, match or ‌crush with positive thoughts ⁢and feelings, so being ‌overly negative can be ⁤a deal-breaker for many.

“A‍ guy⁤ who starts complaining⁤ about things or gossips‌ about others, whether it⁣ is his coworkers and ‍bosses or about the venue ⁣or restaurant service,” says Windsor. “He risks being seen more as a whiner than a winner!”

“I still see a lot of negging around⁢ looks and it just makes me write​ those⁤ guys off, period. Women tend to ‍spend‌ so much more money and attention on⁢ their appearances⁢ in the first place, for the sake of their dates, and then get mocked or undermined for it? Still?” – Lee, 33

While lots ⁣of ⁤people have dark senses of ‍humor or ⁣appreciate ⁢a little ribbing with their flirting, joking about inappropriate stuff or ⁤ragging on the other ⁢person’s ⁤interests can turn their perception of you into one primarily based on negativity.⁢

“[It’s such a turn-off] when ⁤they‌ hate things I like because they⁢ think it’s ⁣girly. Barbie. Taylor Swift. Dolly Alderton books. Just anyone who yucks my yum.” – Alexandra, ⁢36

Similarly, even⁤ if it’s not talking ⁤about your ex,⁢ going into detail about past traumas or grief ‍can be too much, too soon.

Early on in a ⁤dating relationship “isn’t the time to learn‌ about how awful your childhood was,” says Windsor.

“Leave the ‌family skeletons in the closet — at least for now!”

While being vulnerable and sharing‌ sometimes‌ unpleasant details about your past ‍and⁣ inner life is ⁤part of the foundation of building a‍ strong and intimate relationship over time, ‍in⁤ the early going, it can‍ be a seriously unpleasant experience‍ to be on the other side​ of.

Being Uninterested

“[One thing I think is a turn-off?] Flexing⁤ overtly. ⁢Like they came to show off, not converse. And only being interested in similarities.” – Abe, 29

It’s a common complaint that⁤ going on dates with men can be an exercise‍ in hearing about⁤ their lives and ‌not getting much of a chance to talk about your own.

If ‌you’re‌ too busy being ‌confident, boastful, bragging or​ complaining, you’ll never⁣ take a​ moment‌ to ask​ the other person about their perspective.

The silver lining here? ​Because so ⁢many guys⁣ fail at this basic aspect of⁢ dating back-and-forth, you can seriously impress some people just by​ doing them the courtesy of inquiring about their thoughts and⁣ feelings.⁤

RELATED: ‍How ⁣Listening & Asking‍ Questions Makes You Way Sexier ⁣

“I used to set a timer to see ⁣how long the conversation could go without them asking me a question. It was essentially an⁢ interview.” – Maria, 37

Being Distracted or​ Unengaged

Is there any bigger ‍turnoff than someone making you feel like you’re barely worth their time?

“When we’re not fully present in a ⁤conversation, it signals to the other person that we’re not​ engaged,” says Magda‌ Kay. “To invite deep, honest conversation, show⁣ the person that you’re fully ⁣present and committed to listening. Being distracted or interrupting the conversation sends ‌the‍ message that⁣ you’re ​not invested, which can deter them ⁤from opening up.”

That means, of ⁢course, that, if you’re talking in person, your phone is out of sight — unless you’re specifically using it ‌to show ⁣the other person something.

RELATED: The Worst Thing You Can ⁤Do Is Phone Snubbing

Digitally,‍ this could mean⁢ taking steps ⁤to ensure⁢ you’re not ‌distracted while chatting (such as switching on some version of Do Not Disturb that’ll block out ⁣notifications from other apps), or clearly communicating when you’ll be stepping ⁢away for a time so the other person isn’t left hanging.

Being Boring

Of course, what’s boring to one person might be comfortable and‍ normal ⁢to another; what’s outlandish and wild to one ‌person may practically be boring to someone else. But if you’re talking to someone and trying ⁣to impress them, at least try not to be boring.

“[It’s such a turn-off] when ⁣someone off an app just starts ⁣the convo with⁢ ‘hello.’ ⁤So dry, so​ dull, do better!” – Wolfgang,⁣ 26

In a digital ‌context, that could mean crafting ⁣a thoughtful opening message that⁣ specifically addresses what’s in a person’s profile; in person, it could be about ⁣asking thoughtful first-date questions.

RELATED: Best Questions to⁤ Ask Your Date ​

“Skip superficial questions and dive deep,” Kay suggests. “Creating a ​safe space for intimate conversation requires mutual openness and sharing on a deep level.”

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