Uncommon opinion – chivalry is dead. In a whirlwind of set ups, blind dates and just straight up ‘I’ve seen you in Coles before you have a nice face,’ Navigating the dating world in this generation can sometimes be woeful. Between the somewhat good and downright horrible, the dating game can have you throwing your phone in the river and moving to Antarctica ASAP in hopes of never seeing tinder again. Here are some tips that have had had us holding it together in the midst of a ‘disaster date.’

They are just a friend

If you’ve arrived expecting the virtual connection to match the IRL interaction and your less than impressed … well, sad reacts only. Remind your panicked mind he/she’s not the one of your dreams and your simply out getting a drink with an old (extremely boring) friend. Expectations will drop and you’ll feel comfortable enough to survive at least an hour… alcohol required.

‘I have plans at 10’

This one’s perfect if 20 minutes in you’ve zoned out after the second explanation of how the steak is cooked to PERFECTION at a great restaurant in QLD (tip 2.0 know your audience). Let them know you had plans to meet friends afterwards, and alter that time depending on how quickly the pressure cooker on your patience has left.

Tell the bar staff

Yes, this might feel extreme, but meeting in a public place is not only safe (yes mum) but useful to get that extra help when needed. If your incapable of putting on a brave face, or you are simply creeped out by who has shown up (you need new tinder pics), let the bar staff know. They are more than happy to help you out – and hey you might like one of them instead.

Call back up

At this point dignity is certainly out the window and you know for sure you will never see them again. I know you’re dreaming of hitting the block button the second you arrive home. But UNTIL then, utilise the ridiculous method of a friend calling with a ‘emergency’ or break down in tears. This one can be fun if you’re good at keeping a straight face. Calling another date to pick you up has also been a proven method – yes, it’s happened.

‘My boyf would freak out’

Guilty, i’ve tried this – and it worked.  If you’ve decided your date has overstayed, or again you’d rather be watching antique roadshow with your dogs, tell them your boyfriend/girlfriend would freak out if they knew you were here. NOTHING will get someone away from you quicker than dropping the ‘my boyfriend will be home in 20 minutes’. Pro tip – the shorter time till said partner is home = greater flush of panic written all over their face.

Happy bad dating, don’t forget to Nominate for Singled Out!