Sometimes on a first date we can be so swept up in the romance and the potential that we fail to see what’s right before our nose. I’m known for having over 70 first dates after my divorce and no second dates as something seemed wrong with every single one. I’d already been burned in my marriage and by many before him so I knew just what to look for, there was a red flag on every date! From my experience (and that of real people) here are some signs to look out for so you don’t dive straight into a relationship that will only become stickier by the second. On a more positive note the guy I gave a second date to became husband number 2 and we’re smugly happy so I’m glad I trusted my instincts.

Here are some first date red flags to avoid. See part two next week for more.

  1. The Mummy’s Boy

If, like me, you have a son, you may find it sweet that he rings his mum, talks about her and relates her opinion on your first date together; however this may be great for the tow of them but does nothing for the future of your relationship. Unless she’s your long lost best friend you’re unlikely to have a grown up pairing with mummy choosing his first date underwear. I had one date that had to leave before midnight to walk his mum’s dog. “Is she on holiday?” I asked, “No,” He Replied, “She just worries if she doesn’t see me every day so it’s a job she made up for me.”

  1. The Player

With internet dating it’s a wonder there’s still any need for prostitution as many men use it as a way to get a free lay even travelling hundreds of miles just to secure your sex in bed. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with sleeping with someone on the first date, however look for the warning signs, such as words that come out of his mouth that say, “I’m not looking for a relationship”, “I’m always really busy with work so might not be able to see you next week” and so on. Now I must admit this was usually me as I didn’t want to commit to anything before I’d scoped them out, yet one did travel 400 miles and still say this, however he didn’t count on returning to an email I’d sent before leaving the house, which told him exactly the same.

  1. The Poor Man

Now I’m not saying that every skint man should be avoided but if he’s accidently left his wallet at home and you have to pick up the tab alarm bells should start ringing. If he’s invited you on this date the least he can do is pay half and if he’s in between jobs, he should have waited until he had enough money to ask you out, or at least choose a date (such as a coffee or walk in the park) that doesn’t cost much. The fact he’s not waited or used his imagination shows little respect- ditch. The first time this happened I believed the date, the second time I just told him we better save it for another night then.

  1. The Ex Obsessed

It’s an easy trap to fall into on a first date no matter how much relationship gurus tell you not to. As talking about our ex’s actually gets the conversation flowing and allows us to learn a little about what to expect from a relationship with the person. However if he won’t talk about anything else, or asks for reassurance or your opinion, get out of there or at least ask him when they broke up- if he answers along the lines of 17 days and 4 hours ago –RUN! These are very common, and I’ve encountered too many to mention, but if he also slags her off be careful as he may be talking about you that way one day.

  1. The Lad

You’ll notice the lad as he’ll take you to somewhere his mates will see him and he’ll probably pay you only third party attention, pretending he wants you to meet his mates. This is fine for the first half an hour, but if he doesn’t suggest you go somewhere more romantic and quieter (alone) after this then he has issues. This happened to me when I was foolish enough to date an ego maniac. He was recognised by a group of lads who knew him from his mini celebrity status as a national rugby player. He spent the date just lapping up the attention thinking I’d be impressed. I was bored silly.