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5 Things Men Don’t Want to Hear About on a First Date

By Andrea McGinty February 29, 2024 Dating

Maybe these will surprise you. Maybe not. But as a top dating coach, I hear a lot of stories from my male clients. Please pay attention as they make up half of the people I work with on a weekly basis. Before you think I’m singling out the audience of Sixty and Me, keep in mind that these are valid things to consider in your own dating behavior. Also, stay tuned for my next article, which will be about things that drive women crazy about dating – online or in real life.

So, what is a first date meant to be? Only a chance to see if you’d like a second date, not a therapy session. A first date is meant to be light, fun and see if you have a bit of chemistry and topics in common with the person you’re meeting.

About 50% of men and women follow these “rules.” But the other half, oh my!

So, let’s get on with what men never want to hear on the first date:

Why You Have Split Up (Got Divorced) and in Particular, Who Initiated It

Think of it this way. You are meeting someone for the first time, probably over lunch or a coffee. Why would you ask this question? A first date is much like a networking event; would you ask such a question in that setting? Hopefully, no. Why would you care at this point?

Now, the question of divorce/separation can become much more relevant after 4 or 5 dates, but certainly not beforehand. This is a big first date no-no and a 100% guarantee you won’t be seeing a 2nd date with this person.

If there is mutual interest, you will learn more about each other over time, so exercise some patience.

Complaining About… Anything

Remember, a negative attitude drains; a positive attitude energizes.

Complaining, in any form, about anything, will not bring about the positive outcome you’re hoping for. Here are some examples from the past week.

Example 1: Complaints as Excuses

Michael, 64, from NYC, met Lana for a lunch date. She walked in 10 minutes late and complained about her Uber driver and how the rain had ruined her hair. The date went downhill from there – she proceeded to tell him about her arrogant boss and that she was thinking of changing jobs/careers.

What were his thoughts? He shared this: “She will be a nightmare to be in a relationship with,” and he’s one of the most positive guys I’ve had the pleasure of working with. Even Lana’s good looks could not overcome her personality!

Example 2: Complaining of Your Date

Ok, here’s another one for the books! Tim, 68, from Boca Raton, FL, met Annaliese for a drink. She immediately said she was famished, and did he mind dinner too? (Yes, he did as he just wanted to grab a drink and perhaps an appetizer and go to his grandson’s soccer game after.)

He voiced he had another commitment afterwards, and guess what she said? “Well, then, I hope you are at least paying for this date as it took me over an hour to get ready.” Being rude will not gain you any points. And, by the way, I’ve come to realize that men don’t care how long it takes you to get ready.

Physical Ailments

You have upcoming dental surgery, have an upcoming knee replacement or just got over a bad flu? Do not share anything about your physical condition. You don’t want to sound like a hypochondriac, do you?

A Political Rant

I wouldn’t touch this with a 10-foot pole. Isn’t our country divisive enough as it is? Why would you want to start a fresh relationship and encounter a person over this topic? Yes, you may feel strongly about this and this, and it is your right. It just does not show you in the most positive light.

Please note, I didn’t say a gentle conversation about the country’s state of affairs – I said a political rant! You’d just come across as angry, and it’s not an appropriate conversation for a first meeting.

Problems with Children/Family Relationship Conflicts

I think we’ll just call this oversharing and inappropriate. This happened to Steve, a 71-year-old man from Boston, meeting Tanya for the first time last Monday. She shared how upset she was that her 43-year-old daughter had cut her out of her life and then went on to tell him why. Steve told me afterward, “Thank God it was coffee and I was out of there in 30 minutes.”

He called me Friday afternoon to tell me about Karina, 69 – the antithesis of Tanya – who was light and laughter. They made plans to play disk golf tomorrow, and he was excited.

The Question of “No Good Men Left”

One more thing I must address: are there good men out there in the online world? You bet – I meet them every week same as my female clients. So, take ownership of your dating life and if you are not meeting the quality of men you’d like, perhaps it’s time to re-evaluate how you are going about dating, the right online dating sites, the right photos… and the right attitude!

Happy Dating!

Let’s Have a Conversation:

What do you share on a first date? Do you keep the conversation light and fun? Have you blundered by raising any of the above mentioned topics?

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Yikes! I complained about my marriage, I’ve complained about my left knee arthroscopy, I’ve complained about my psycho landlady, I’ve complained that I despise the city that I live in (and where my dates live!!!). Oh, well, back to the drawing board! Thanks :)


I relocated to a new area – some 500 miles away. Never once mentioned my former spouse or his name. I got rid of just about everything I had during that 28 year empty marriage.

Every 6-8 weeks I would fly to visit one of my adult children who had also relocated. The suitcase was always packed.

Fortunately, one of my kids relocated to an area where I have vacationed over the years. Long winter, snowy (I’ve written about them recently on this site). We have 4-5 fabulous months. Maybe at some point, I will winter elsewhere. Trying to figure out a good place for a single, older snowbird.


I don’t date anymore by design. Never liked dating as a teen. Should I meet someone I enjoy I might spend time with them. No expectations. I am living my best life – with myself.


I just dated a widower, she has been gone 8 years and it was like the funeral was yesterday, even whipped out a picture of her and declared “here’s my girl”. I cannot compete with a ghost nor do I want to. He went on ad nauseum about his wants and needs, touch, kiss, cuddle, all about him and that he wanted to be “cherished” on and on. He then said he will not be pursuing me, I didn’t float his boat, he didn’t get excited about the thought of seeing me. A week later he sends a text asking how my week was going I had one action “BLOCK” Some men have no clue.


charmee, yikes. Aren’t you glad he told you right away all you needed to know? I went out with a lawyer who picked a very expensive place to lunch. Immediately, he told me all about his divorce. I sensed not only was he cheap financially, he was cheap of the heart. He handed me the bill, told me what my half was with a tip. I got up, put my coat on. Left the bill on his plate to his bewildered face and said, “You invited me. You have spent the last 30 minutes talking about yourself. I do wish you well.” And sashayed myself out the door.

The Author

Andrea McGinty is the founder of It’s Just Lunch dating service. She sold it and founded so she could help singles navigating online dating. In the 2020s, she knows the best way to meet people is through online dating using a professional coach and specializes in singles in their 50s-70s!

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