How to Turn Down a Date Gracefully

Learning to turn down a date gracefully can be a valuable people skill. Turning down a date without causing hurt feelings is a delicate maneuver. If you have occasion to turn down a date, there are tactics to soften the blow. It’s best to turn down a date gracefully, without insulting the person who is asking you out. Why cause someone pain just because they are not the right person for you?

Consider Accepting

Before you turn down a date gracefully, consider accepting instead. Provided you are not already dating someone else, what harm could one platonic date do? Would it be such a horrible thing to go to a movie or dinner and get to know someone better? What are you doing that day or night? If the answer is nothing, why turn down a date to stay at home and watch TV alone?

Avoid Outside Influences

Think about why you are turning down this date. Is it simply because the person is not popular or a member of your regular crowd? Instead of accepting the date, turn down the date gracefully. Then ask if they’d like to come to a party or event with the group. Once you get to know the person in a group setting, you may find things in common.

Be Honest

Turn down a date gracefully and with honesty. If you aren’t seeing anyone else don’t say that you are. Don’t tell the person stories that will later be uncovered as lies. This compromises the quality of your friendship. Tell them how you honestly feel. It’s much better to be turned down gracefully then strung along by a bunch of lies.

Be Friendly

There is no need to be hostile or rude when turning down a date. Turn down a date gracefully without hurling insults or laughing at the person asking. What is the point of hurting someone like this? Simply state your reasons and say no. Tell them you’d be happy to see them as a friend but you just don’t have romantic feelings for them.

Keep Things Private

Nobody likes to be turned down for a date. It’s even worse with witnesses around. It can be very embarrassing to be rejected this way in front of friends. Young people may be especially embarrassed when turned down in front of classmates. Just take the person to one side and let them down gently. Turn down a date gracefully by not bragging to friends afterward as well.

Be a Matchmaker

Turn down a date gracefully by being a matchmaker. Explain that you don’t feel this would be a good match. Mention a friend who might be interested. Explain why you think your friend would be a better choice. Suggest a double date or group outing so they can get to know each other. It could be the start of something special for your two friends.

Turn down a date gracefully to avoid hurt feelings. Consider the idea of saying yes to a platonic first date. Form your own opinions about the person involved. Be honest and friendly. Turn down a date gracefully by keeping it private. Suggest someone else this person might be interested in. All these techniques allow you to turn down a date gracefully.


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