How To End A Date When You're Really Not That Into Them

If you've ever seen the 2009 romantic comedy, "He's Just Not That Into You," you're more than familiar with the many stories we sometimes tell ourselves (and our friends) about why a person isn't showing any interest after a date. They got busy, they've gone out of town for a few days, they're scared of getting too close, etc. And more often than not, these explanations come about because the other person hasn't been upfront about why they didn't reply to a text or call back after a date. 

In fact, think about the time when you went on a date with someone and by the end of it, you realized that you're really not that into them. The evening was pleasant enough but you just didn't feel the chemistry. What did you do? Did you return home and dodge their calls hoping that they'd get the message? Did you ghost them? Or did you send them a text telling them how you felt? 

Dating experts will tell you that there is a right way to end a date when you don't want to pursue anything more with the person. Just like there are some texts you should never send after a first date, there are ways you should be handling a date that didn't meet your expectations. 

Be honest and direct but also be kind

It's never easy to let someone down. If you've been on the receiving end of rejection, you probably know how bad it feels. But you likely also know that the feeling passes with time. Relationship coach Clara Artschwager told Bustle that learning to be honest with someone you're not into is good practice for future encounters. "You're practicing direct, honest, transparent communication, being vulnerable with another individual, and allowing yourself to be seen," she explained. What is within your control is sharing your truth with kindness. Managing their emotions isn't really your concern. 

If you're someone who hates the thought of hurting someone, you may benefit from dating coach and author Mat Boggs's idea of "no private good." If you don't feel attraction for someone and know that pursuing anything more with them is not a good idea for you, that simultaneously means that the situation isn't good for the other person either. By being honest with the person, you're setting them free to find other opportunities that best align with who they are. You're also freeing them from wasting precious emotional and mental energy trying to pursue something you don't want them pursuing. 

Dating coach Emyli Lovz shared that learning to reject someone nicely is actually an exercise in empathy for those times when you might be on the receiving end of disappointment.

What to say to someone when you're not into them

Ending a date with someone with whom you didn't feel any chemistry or didn't share similar dating goals doesn't have to be complicated. There are a few different things you can tell them (via text or call) depending on the situation. If chemistry was the issue, try telling them, "Hey, it was nice to hang out finally after all the texting we did before. But, after reflecting on the date, I have to say that I didn't feel a spark between us. I hope you find what you're looking for. All the best." 

If you and your date turned out to not share the same goals, try texting them this — "It was fun grabbing Indian food last night. I enjoyed our conversation but I'm looking for something long-term right now. So, best of luck with everything. I don't think it's a good idea for us to hang out again." 

Whatever you say, be kind, respectful, and honest, and try not to leave room for more conversation by indicating that you want to be friends, especially if you sincerely felt that they were into you. This might even lead to you being roped into going on a second date just to appease them, which is never a good idea. If you're sure about how you feel, don't mince your words or leave room for ambiguity. They're better off knowing the truth than being led on.