I overshared with my office about a Tinder date and it didn’t work out

A reader writes:

I screwed up. I work in an office of around 30 people, and a handful of us share the same job and are close. One happily married woman wanted a younger person’s perspective on Tinder. I had just joined and explained to her how it worked. She was wary about the sorts of men that use it, and it came up that I had a date scheduled.

We looked over his profile with a couple of other coworker friends. They approved, but since we work in an open office soon they were talking about it loudly and everyone knew. Word even spread to my bosses, one of whom really started asking a lot of questions. That would have been bad enough, but this gets worse.

The next day, once everyone saw I hadn’t been killed on the date, they asked for a report and I said it went well. What I didn’t say was that after a few drinks and what seemed to me like a really strong personal connection, things ended up going farther than I intended and we slept together.

He texted me a few times the next day, which led me to tell everyone I hoped to see him again. But now instead of constant texts, he sends me short responses. I let him know I had a great time and … nothing. He updated his dating profile. I think he is freezing me out.

I feel so ashamed of myself for not paying attention to the yellow flags I saw before the date. It was so exciting because I haven’t been out in a while due to low self-esteem from previous relationships. This isn’t helping and I feel sick imagining going back to work and having people ask about this, especially my boss who will latch onto a subject and drive it into the ground. I actually did call in sick today because of the anxiety.

I want to pretend this never happened, but how can I suddenly do an about-face when the last time these people saw me I gushed? Should I just pull aside one or two of the people I’m close to that talked a lot about it and ask them to nip any conversations that may pop up in the bud? How can I let them know how sure I am of how this situation is playing out without revealing I was so naïve and reckless (and we can’t chalk this one up to youth; I’m not the youngest person in my workplace)? I have never messed up so badly in my personal and professional life. I know I’ll get over this personally, but how do I deal with questions when I go back to work?

I … don’t really think you messed up here in a significant way.

You went on a date, you liked the guy, and then things didn’t work out. That happens! It doesn’t mean you did anything wrong.

And yes, it would have been better not to let it become such a topic of conversation at work. But when you have warm, friendly relationships with colleagues, sometimes this stuff comes up and you end up saying a little more than you wish you had. Lots of us have done that. It’s not ideal, but it’s not a terrible sin either. (It does tend to make you lie awake at night cringing sometimes, but it’s usually a blip for other people unless you’re continually over-sharing, which it doesn’t sound like you are.)

It sounds like you feel embarrassed because you liked this guy and thought he liked you but it turned out that he’s not so interested, and you feel like you’ll have to report that to your office and it’ll somehow reflect on you.

But you don’t, and it doesn’t.

You don’t owe your office a full accounting of what went on! You can just vaguely say, “Yeah, I’m not sure it’s going anywhere” or “We didn’t click enough” or “Eh, we’ll see” or any other vague response you want. And if people push to know why, you can say, “Who knows with these things” or “Just not right for each other, I guess” or any other information-free response, and then change the subject. People will probably follow your cues, but if they don’t, it’s also okay to say, “I realized I shouldn’t have talked about it so much at work! This is a dating-talk-free zone for me from now on” or “Oh, I’m really trying not to think about it — thanks for understanding.”

Frankly, you’re also allowed to just make up a cover story if it makes it easier for you: he’s moving in a week, or he hates kittens, or whatever else lets you easily convey “it’s not going to happen.” I don’t normally advocate lying, but this is no one’s business and a cover story about one date won’t affect them in any way and might be the easier route if you work with boundary-pushers.

Most importantly, though, there’s such a sense of shame coming through in your letter, and it isn’t warranted here! Try thinking of it this way: If you’d gone on the date and decided you didn’t like him, you might feel a little silly for having talked him up ahead of time, but you wouldn’t be feeling as embarrassed as you are now. You’d just come in, be like “yeah, wasn’t for me,” and wouldn’t have all these big feelings about it. I think you feel worse because it’s all tied up in the rejection, but your office has no claim on those details. None! You can reframe this as “just didn’t work out” and not get mired in the rest of it.

It’s true that there’s a lesson here to be more cautious in what you share at work, especially about something like a first date where you can’t predict how it’s going to go. But you know, some people share about upcoming first dates and it’s fine. You really didn’t commit a massive faux pas — you just put yourself in a situation that now feels a little awkward, but it’s easily fixable!

{ 311 comments… read them below }

  1. Zip Silver*

    Allison’s spot on about how to spin this at work. As far as Tinder in general goes, I can say from a guy’s perspective that it’s not really the ideal place to be looking for love. Most guys who are still single in my social group (and definitely back when we were in college) use it to search for one night stands. From my experience, relationships that start on Tinder are the exception.

    1. Shark Whisperer*

      I definitely think there are other apps or dating services that are more gear towards people looking for relationships, but something about your characterization bothers me. As a caveat, I am a woman and I have never used Tinder, but all my closest guy friends have. The three dudes who talk to me the most about their relationships, they definitely used tinder as a casual thing, but were open to relationships forming if there was a spark. One is now married to a girl he met on tinder, one is engaged to a girl he met on tinder, and one is still single. Now compared to the number of girls they matched with or went on dates with, two actual relationships is incredibly small, but that’s also true of every other dating site.

      I just strongly dislike the narrative that all guys (on tinder) just want to bang and then ghost. It feels very unfair to men as a whole because men want a while variety of things.

      1. sunny-dee*

        I only know a couple of people who used Tindr (or admitted to it), but all of them had only hookups — lots and lots, so many hookups — and no serious relationships. It’s pretty much only for hooking up. It’s kind of like saying that true love can emerge from a one-night bar hookup. Yes, but you really shouldn’t count on it.

        1. PersonalJeebus*

          Here’s a good rule of thumb: If you meet someone through an avenue that is not specifically designed to encourage serious relationships, you should assume the person you’re matched with is probably not *actively* looking for a serious relationship, even if they might be open to it. Tinder is not like Match.com, or (as an Orthodox friend of mine put it) like being set up on a date within your religious community, where the understanding is that the people involved are looking for something long-term.

          But the principle underlying that rule of thumb is: don’t assume anything about people’s motivations based on one date or on how you met. I’m more than five years married to my last bar hookup! Keep an open mind, pay attention to your instincts, and guard your heart.

      2. Important Moi*

        Shark Whisperer, I agree totally with everything you said. People can meet under sorts of circumstances and have relationships.

        Zip Silver, your experience is noted. ;)

      3. Jack*

        I don’t think saying guys on tinder are looking for one night stands sets a general “narrative” about men that needs arguing. Many people are aware that tinder is used as a hook up ap. Saying “all guys” and then adding “(on tinder)” in parentheses, separates the “on tinder” part of this equation, which is important to the overall context of this statement. It’s much different than saying “all guys are just looking for one night stands”. Plus, Zip Silver didn’t say “all” guys. He said “most” guys.

      4. Can't Think of a Name*

        +100 to Zip Silver

        I’m a woman, and I’ve been using Tinder on and off since 2013 (mostly as a way to meet new people, since I hate going out). Definitely would not rely on it as a source for a serious relationship – pretty much all the guys I’ve met there just want to hook up. That being said, my current boyfriend of 1.5 years and I did meet on Tinder! But that’s the exception, not the rule. It took literally thousands of matches and many, many bad dates (including engaged/married guys using Tinder to cheat) before I found my diamond in the rough.

        OP, don’t stress about this though! It’s VERY common for Tinder dates/relationships to fall through. Although if you’re looking for a serious relationship, I’d recommend exploring other apps, like Coffee Meets Bagel or Bumble (where women have to message first). I’d recommend significantly lowering the bar for expectations for Tinder. As one of my friends says about dating, “The bar is so low, you could trip over it.” Good luck!

        1. Emily K*

          Yes, this matches my experience too. It’s not a slam on men, but people tend to self-select into different apps. It might have changed since I was last on them 2-3 years ago, but my experience was that Match.com and the newer “elite” approval-required dating apps tended to be people who are over dating and just want to find someone already. Bumble and OK Cupid tended to be people who could go either way, about equally open to a casual hookup or something more depending on how things went. Tinder (and Grinder, as I have been informed by its target market) are people looking for casual hookups almost exclusively.

          It’s not that “men want to bang and ghost,” exactly, I just think that unfortunately Tinder has that reputation enough that guys might assume that women they match with on Tinder are on the same page. And a lot of women on Tinder are on that page. There’s nothing wrong with being on that page if both people realize that’s where they are.

      5. MCMonkeyBean*

        Your comment overall seems pretty much to line up with what they said–serious relationships do of course come from it but that’s not overall what the majority of people are looking for on there. It’s nothing against men as a whole. There are a zillion dating apps now and Tinder has always been one that was more geared toward casual hookups. I think that’s useful knowledge for OP if they didn’t realize that and are this upset to realize her date was probably just looking for something more casual than she was.

      6. Laura*

        Maybe it’s because I was a little older when I used Tinder (around 30), but I would say of the ~7 guys I met on Tinder, all but one or two were open to a serious relationship if it worked out that way. I met my boyfriend of 2.5 years on it. I’m pretty sure all of my good friends who started serious relationship within the last 5 years met on apps. So it always confuses me when people say Tinder is JUST for hookups. I think that’s wishful thinking from a lot of dudes….

    2. Arielle*

      I just went to a wedding where their theme was “we swiped right!” but I think you’re right that Tinder tends to be on the sketchier side of the online dating spectrum. I met my spouse on OkCupid as did a lot of people I know, but even when I was doing a lot of dating, Tinder definitely had a hookup vibe.

        1. Erin W*

          And another! Actually, we went out with friends (three other couples) a year or two ago and two were OK Cupid couples and one was a Tinder couple. One of the Cupids has broken up, one is still together, and the Tinders got married. (So WHO KNOWS.)

      1. anon for this*

        Me and my husband met on a site literally named datehookup! Neither one of us was looking for a hookup, but it was free (for real, where you could send and receive messages) and had good forums on all topics. Site is defunct now. OP, don’t feel you have to report details about your dating life or feel badly about a one-night stand. We women have itches that need to be scratched sometimes too. Just tell your coworkers that you enjoyed the date but are still looking. Don’t give up either. Meeting the right one is a numbers game. Oh the stories I could tell of the folks I met before Mr. Anon.

    3. Bee*

      Eh, it also depends a LOT on your location and age. How a 20-year-old uses it has no real bearing on how a 30-year-old uses it.

      1. I Wrote This in the Bathroom*

        Agree. Like I posted below, I saw nothing bad about it when I used it, but I’m definitely a much older demographic, with children in their 20s.

      2. Princess Consuela Banana Hammock*

        Yeah—my impression is that different generations view it very differently. It was definitely considered a one-night-stand app when I was younger, but most folks I know, now, use it as one of multiple online dating tools for date-dating.

      3. zora*

        This. Demographics make a huge difference. All the different sites and apps have a different core audience in different geographic areas.

        In 2015, in the San Francisco Bay, the vast majority of people online dating were on Tinder and it had a huge variety of people on it. I went on many dates, and only with men in their 30s-40s, who were clear about looking for a relationship not a hookup. And am now in a committed relationship with one of those dates.

        Now, Bumble is increasing in popularity here, and I hear from more people looking for relationships are going there.

        But you really can’t generalize about these apps across the whole country/world. It’s very location and demographic dependent.

    4. Dr. Pepper*

      It’s not ideal, no, but it can happen. Not all the guys on there are just looking for one thing. A relative of mine is on Tinder because he doesn’t have much free time for meeting people the old fashioned way, and he really does want a relationship, not a casual hook up. But yeah, I realize that he is one out of many who are only looking for the casual one night stand, friends with benefits, I’ll call you at 2am when I’m lonely type of thing.

    5. Mystery Bookworm*

      I mean, long-term relationships that start from ANY date are the exception. If most of them worked out, there would be very few single people.

      That said, I have seen more happy relationships come out of Bumble than Tinder, but that’s hardly a scientific observation.

    6. Observer*

      I’m not sure why this is even relevant. I’m not arguing whether you’re right about Tinder, I just don’t think it’s useful.

      Normally I wouldn’t care, but the OP is already SOOOO hard on herself over how badly she messed up, she doesn’t need to hear ANOTHER thing she did “wrong.”

      1. Washi*

        Yes, the OP did not write in to AAM asking “is Tinder a good way to find a relationship?” OP, I think we’ve all been in your shoes, even if it’s not been about a date. I’ve definitely gushed about how well an interview went and then not gotten the job or about how much I love a new hobby, and then never picked it up again. I think the lesson here is to be careful at work about sharing something juicy that you wouldn’t want the whole office talking about – not a lot of people can resist the temptation to gossip, especially if they see the topic as something benign.

        1. Smarty Boots*

          Yeah, and also I think your colleagues are kind of inappropriate — why was everyone, not just the few people you talked with, making this a big topic of discussion? So much so that bosses got into it?? Sounds like an overly gossipy place. Now you know that about your colleagues — who may be lovely people in general, but who don’t have any problem yakking about others’ personal business. Don’t share anything you wouldn’t mind your boss hearing about (and, no doubt, hearing about with wrong info, because that’s how gossip works).

          But OP, you didn’t do anything wrong, and please try not to feel ashamed — there was nothing shameful on your part. Nothing.

          1. Not So NewReader*

            It could be boredom. People latch on to any tidbit of news/gossip just to break the monotony of the work day. So that day, OP’s date was the boredom breaker. It’s not that people really care about OP’s dating life, it’s that they care mostly about get rid of boredom.

            OP, if you go in with a flat tone, probably they will just move on to something that seems interesting “I think I will keep looking.. [with a small shrug].”

            1. anonny*

              Yeah, or also just curiosity. If the OP was really really enthusiastic, maybe they were just making conversation. If my coworker was gushing all day Friday about how excited they were for a concert on Saturday night, on Monday morning I’d probably ask them how it went. Not because I was gossipy, but just to make conversation.

      2. Zip Silver*

        I know she’s hard on herself. She wanted to know how to save face at her office, and if she wants to keep using Tinder (which can be really fun, I liked using it back in the day) she can align her expectations up so the results are less disappointing (or exceed low expectations!)

        1. WellRed*

          I agree and appreciate your perspective as a guy. I hope reading comments about what Tinder is help her get over her shame.

      3. PB*

        Yep. That said, I think it is a good reminder that lots of Tinder dates don’t lead to long term relationships, just like dates with people you met anywhere else. OP, I’m sorry you’re feeling so awkward right now, but I suspect your coworkers will be understanding. I hope things look up!

      4. Michaela Westen*

        I think I understand why the OP is struggling with this, I did too.
        I grew up in fundamentalist area where women who had sex were “sluts” and men who had sex were “studs”. I’m not sure exactly how, but it conveyed a sense that a woman should know exactly how to behave to get a man into a relationship and if that didn’t happen, she was a failure and a slut and worthless as a person.
        Of course none of that is true! None of us can know what’s going to happen. I’ve also seen a happy relationship start on Tinder and a one-night stand for the wrong reasons lead to a happy marriage with children.
        I worked a long time on getting past those feelings and they still bother me a little – any time I take a chance with a guy I feel if it doesn’t work out it’s my fault but it’s not, it’s his too. Usually more his, because I’m doing my best and the last two men did not.

        1. Young coworker*

          It’s also nobodies fault if it doesn’t work out – it would be absurd if every date led to marriage right away!

        2. HarvestKaleSlaw*

          It’s so true. I know the culture, and blame is always, always, always on the woman.

          He didn’t like her back? She’s defective.
          He didn’t like her back but they slept together? She’s defective and a slut.
          He broke up with her, but they never had sex? She overplayed her hand – she thought she was worth waiting for, but she’s not.
          He broke up with her, but they were having sex? She’s a used piece of tape/gum/tissue that he threw out like she deserved.
          He likes her, but she doesn’t like him back? She led him on, and now she owes him something.

          1. I Wrote This in the Bathroom*

            Yes, exactly! When I started dating after a long marriage, I was not enjoying it or having a good experience until I snapped out of that mindset, that was apparently ingrained in me from in 80s. As soon as I realized that everyone is there to have some kind of a meaningful (to them) connection with another human being, and that NO ONE OWES ANYONE ANYTHING (because it would in some way violate consent if people were obligated to do things like go on a second date if the first was good, become exclusive after six weeks, propose after two years etc… you want them to want to do those things with you, otherwise you’ll end up in a miserable relationship/marriage and I already had one of those!), my dating experience became so much more enjoyable and productive.

          2. Michaela Westen*

            Yes, exactly! Thank you for putting it so well!
            I can’t say enough about the damage this does to women and girls. It’s a key part of the oppression in our culture. :(

        3. Amber T*


          Also – drama is great for movies and television shows, and I think we’re led to expect that relationships must either exist or end DRAMATICALLY, but sometimes people aren’t compatible, and that’s boring but 100% okay. And that super sucks when the compatibility factor is more one sided (ie, Person A feels like they want to get to know Person B more, where Person B just isn’t interested), but it’s a thing.

          1. I Wrote This in the Bathroom*

            Mark Manson said something like, we are conditioned to see a relationship as a failure if it ends with both people still alive. Sometimes things end just because they were good, but ran their course and it’s best to leave with good memories than to continue.

    7. The Original K.*

      The app/site that I’ve seen yield the most long-term relationships, including marriages, is Match. I’ve been a guest at and/or bridesmaid in five Match weddings, and I know of plenty more Match couples. I think since you pay, people are more inclined to take it seriously. Second is OKCupid.

      I used Tinder for a few months and I put on my profile that I wanted to date, not hook up – and I did meet and go on actual dates with people, some of them nice, but nothing that stuck. I stopped using it because overall, it was more casual than I wanted.

      1. Aurora Leigh*

        Aww! My bf and I are a Match couple <3! But the last 2 weddings I went to, the couples met on Tinder.

      2. Katniss*

        Does Match allow for bisexuals yet? I really wasn’t a fan of that back when I was using apps so I refused to sign up.

        1. Mine Own Telemachus*

          Noooope, which is one of the reasons I stick to Tinder or OkCupid. OkCupid even allows for you to hide from straight people!

          1. General Ginger*

            I had no idea about OkCupid allowing that! I’m separated and kind of starting to think about dating, and that sounds like a very handy feature. Thank you.

        2. The Original K.*

          I had no idea that wasn’t available (cis/het here). I know two same-sex couples who met and married on Match, but I didn’t know there was no bisexuality option.

        3. anon today and tomorrow*

          This is why I used Coffee Meets Bagel for a long time. OK Cupid meant I received a lot of requests for threesome or saw a lot of “no bisexuals!!!” in lesbian profiles.

          Most dating apps or sites only let you choose men or women and it’s frustrating. I was relieved when CMB made the switch and let you choose both options.

      3. I Wrote This in the Bathroom*

        I had no luck on Match, but that was in the early 2010s, and most people that I met there were definitely looking for something serious and marriage-like. I just wasn’t a good cultural fit with that group, being an immigrant. They were out there looking for someone who was exactly like them, grew up in the same area we live in, maybe even went to the same high school or knew the same people, I was not what they looked for in a life partner. The feeling was mutual. Most of them absolutely did look for marriage though.

        1. whingedrinking*

          maybe even went to the same high school or knew the same people
          Wait, wouldn’t a dating site be almost counterproductive in that case? You’d end up meeting so many people outside your scope when you could just, you know, ask people you already know if they have any single friends.

          1. I Wrote This in the Bathroom*

            Right? I was taught that the main advantage of online dating is that you get to meet people you wouldn’t otherwise. These guys met me, whom they wouldn’t otherwise, and then proceeded to drop hints and otherwise act uncomfortable with how much of an other I was to them. I’ve gotten asked if I was a KGB agent; if I have vodka for breakfast. A guy asked if I liked it here or wanted to go home. I was like, I’m talking to you from my house? if you think I’m not home, then maybe we are not a good match.

            1. General Ginger*

              Sympathetic high five. If I had a dollar for every KGB and vodka question I had, I could have retired in my 20s, seriously.

        1. PhyllisB*

          Back in my day there were no web-sites and such for meeting people. We did it the old-fashioned way; I was fixed up by one of my friends and her fiance. Actually, he and I had been great friends in college and lost touch. When he realized who I was, he told me first off that I HAD to meet his best buddy. I was a bit wary of going on a blind date and tried to talk a friend of mine into taking my place. Well, we met and the rest is history. We are celebrating 42 years of marriage today!!

          1. PhyllisB*

            All this talk of dating sites has me curious: the first one I heard much about was EHarmony.com is it still a thing?

      4. DCR*

        That really varies based on age and location. I don’t know any match couples, as a mid-30s single in DC. And I tried it and had no luck at all. In contrast, I know tons of Tinder couples and a few bumble couples

        1. HR Newbie*

          Same. Mid-30’s married now, who literally tried them all (Match, EHarmony, Coffee Meets Bagel, OK Cupid, Plenty of Fish, Tinder…) It just depends on your area and demographics. Match wasn’t worth the free trial in my area. “You both don’t smoke, you’re a Match!” All of this just seems to be anecdotal. I figure your best chance is always on the site that has the most users to pull from.

        2. Oscar Jeff*

          Yes, I was thinking the same thing after reading all of the comments about match couples. I’m early-30s in DC, and I know a lot of Tinder couples as well but not really any from other dating sites.

    8. Trout 'Waver*

      The only guy I know that did Tinder is currently in a long term committed relationship with a girl he met on Tinder. So, YMMV.

      1. sunny-dee*

        My husband had a coworker / friend who used Tindr. I remember his stupefied expression when he was telling me that the eighth guy she’d hooked up with that month had texted the next day to ask for boob pics, and she was insulted that just because she’d slept with him, he thought she’d be cool with boob pics.

        I seriously don’t even know how to process that.

        1. Nita*

          Hey, she has a point! Pics are a whole other story. Once you text them to someone, there is no telling what they’ll do with them. Not personal experience, thankfully, but there are enough stories out there about photos ending up on websites/being used for revenge/being passed around to strangers/you name it.

          1. TootsNYC*

            also boob pics are about objectifying you, thinking about your body parts sexually while you are not even in the room. At least with sex, you’re there, and you get something out of it too.

        2. Trout 'Waver*

          There’s a big difference between hooking up with someone and producing amateur porn for them. It’s rude to request regardless if you’ve slept with someone or not. My partner would think it rude of me if I requested nude shots from them out of the blue.

          Also, who cares how many people she slept with? She still gets to set her own boundaries. She could hook up with the whole marching band but draw the line at the bass drum player and that’s perfectly OK.

        3. Leslie knope*

          Your husbands coworker sounds like a jackass tbh. Why is it relevant how many dudes she’s slept with? And really, trusting any guy with nudes is a hell of a gamble lately.

          1. Tindr Bride*

            By describing the actions of one jackass who used it? That’s quite the stretch!

            I and three of my good friends all met our husbands on there. Lots of other friends have found long term partners on there.

            Like most things, it’s not just one type of guy – or woman – using the site. Life usually isn’t that simplistic, y’know!

          2. Linda*

            By counting the number of guys your husband’s coworker slept with in a month? How was that in any way relevant other than to slut shame her?

          1. A bee*

            I’m with you. The ‘I don’t even know how to process that’ squicked me out so bad. So if a woman sleeps with however many dudes in a month, she loses the right to not want to send intimate pictures of herself to any one of them who asks? I genuinely don’t know how to process that kind of view towards women.

          2. I Wrote This in the Bathroom*

            Yup yup. She hooked up!! with 8 guys!! in a month!! oh my god, release the hounds

        4. MM*

          I mean, while none of that is something I’d share with a coworker, in and of itself I see nothing exotic or unreasonable in her sentiment.

    9. Some Sort of Management Consultant*

      I know at least 5 or 6 couples in my circle of close friends who met on Tinder and loads more who met through other sites.

    10. I Wrote This in the Bathroom*

      About a year after a long-term relationship ended, I tried Tinder briefly last year and it was alright. It also seemed like (at least as of 18 months ago) the platform that everyone was using. Both long-term relationships that I had after my 2010 divorce, had been with people I’d met on OKC, so I went back on it last year and it was dead. Saw someone on there that I’d gone on one date with and had parted on friendly terms with, messaged him to ask how it was going, and his response was “you’re not going to like it here this time around. Everyone left for Bumble and Tinder. I’m hanging in here out of habit myself.” It’s just… another app. Some people were looking for ONS, just like they had when they were on Match and OKC years ago, others were looking for something more permanent. It really is the user community that defines the app. If everyone is now a user of this app, then the app is now mainstream. And I say it as someone who’s since given up on online dating and who has, like, one and a half partners (VERY long story) that I’d both known IRL for years. When you say it’s sketchy, you must be thinking of PlentyOfFish ;)

    11. Jen*

      Agreed. I used Tinder for awhile and, as a straight woman, the vast majority of my Tinder experiences were negative and even very scary and dangerous at times. I did end up dating a man I met on there for a few months and when we split up, I swore off Tinder forever. I ended up meeting my partner on Match, which is geared towards long term relationships, and as it’s a paid site, I got the sense that the people on there were more serious about looking for a lasting relationship.

    12. KR*

      On the other hand my sister met her current boyfriend via Tindr and they’re going strong over a year later.

    13. Holly*

      Online/app dating is just another way to meet people. I’ve met guys in person who aren’t interested in relationships either! I think you’re imputing a generalization on online dating that could apply to meeting someone at a bar, or a party or anywhere else.

      BTW I am engaged to an incredible man I met through an app (not Tinder).

    1. Amber T*

      Agree! When I was single and was app dating, I did the exact same thing – a bunch of us had gone out for drinks after work for something, and a couple of my (older & married) coworkers asked how it worked. So I whipped out my phone, opened up the app (of course the first guy I saw was a butt pic, so… yeah, there’s app dating for you). But the next guy was cute, had a good profile, so I swiped yes, we matched, I texted… and then nothing. The next few days they asked if I heard from him, and I hadn’t. Which was a bummer. But also… just how it goes sometimes. It definitely sucked, and the constant reminders from coworkers were like lemon juice in paper cuts, but it’s also so so so so common that please don’t be embarrassed by this!

    2. SometimesALurker*


      (That doesn’t mean you should immediately stop feeling ashamed or embarrassed, because feelings don’t work that way! )

    3. I Wrote This in the Bathroom*

      Exactly. You did not give them any details. All they know is that you had one date and things fizzled out afterwards, which happens 90% of the time in online dating.

      1. Bostonian*

        This is so true! OP, please don’t beat yourself up over this! It’s so common for people to get excited about someone new at first, only for things to quickly not turn into anything serious, that this won’t even be a blip on your coworkers’ radar.

        If nothing else, you’ve learned the hard way how much you’re comfortable/not comfortable with sharing with your coworkers. But truth be told you really didn’t overshare in any objective way!

  2. Thirtysomething*

    This is definitely not an over share, and nothing to be ashamed of in my opinion. We have these conversations at work a lot, and nobody ever is bothered by it. Usually we like the person(s) so much that when it doesn’t work out, we’re all eager to encourage them on the next date because they’re a great person who will eventually meet the right person! If you shared with them you were going on this date, just tell them it didn’t work out and you’re bummed. Let them take over from there.

    1. Danger: Gumption Ahead*

      Agreed. Hearing about my coworker’s uterus in detail (!) yesterday was an overshare. This is not. You went on a date and told your coworkers you had fun. Now it looks like the relationship is going nowhere, which is a pretty common outcome of first dates, even good ones.

    2. Eve*

      A work colleague I really like divorced and dated casually for ages. The details she went into was revealing to the pint in what they got up to privately. She was having heaps of fun meeting people. I enjoyed listening to her and now a few years later she is married with a kid. I actually miss those initial conversations as they were so fun. OP should not feel anything bad from any of the conversation about the Tinder date – ever. I think OP showed a genuine attitude and attempt to connect honestly with people. It’s ok to be excited about a relationship and share this with people. I would actually find this refreshing and would make me more want to hang with OP at work then someone who plots to discuss specific conversations.

  3. Delta Delta*

    100% agree with Alison on this one. It seems like the best response to co-workers, if they ask again, is to say something like, “eh, it didn’t work out.” and then change the subject.

    1. Hills to Die on*

      Speaking as someone who dated a lot while single, try these:
      1. After getting to know him better, I don’t think it’s going to work out.
      2. I’m just enjoying being single; I realized I didn’t really want a serious relationship right now.
      3. I met some other guy/s and I want to see what happens there
      4. Still dating a little; we are both busy so haven’t had time to connect.

      Just be casual about it! Yeah, sure, it’s cool. Still seeing what’s out there / whatever.

      If you knew all the things your coworkers did / his, everyone would be embarassed all the time! Don’t worry about it. It’s not a big deal. ;)

      1. Mystery Bookworm*

        Also, while I do think lying is 100% acceptable in this sceniaro, if you were honest and said “Oh, I really liked him, but he’s decided he’s not so interested. I’m a little disappointed so I don’t really want to talk about” you’ll probably get a lot of sympathy and commiserating — not judgement!

        I can pretty much promise that everyone in your office has been left out in the cold by someone they liked, too. It doesn’t reflect on us.

        (That’s not to say you do have to share, just to point out that although this can feel damning and personal, it’s a near universal.)

        1. Triplestep*

          I agree about the sympathy, but reading between the lines of the letter, I think the OP is partly embarrassed about being more into her date than he was into her, and probably doesn’t want THAT to be the subject of conversation. If we’re advocating being less than truthful here, I think it’s OK to say he turned out to be not as great as originally thought.

          OP, I agree with the chorus of voices saying you have nothing to be ashamed of!

          1. Miss Pantalones en Fuego*

            Probably even happens to her. I think nearly everyone has had the experience of being more interested in someone than they are in you by the time they reach adulthood.

        2. Holly*

          I don’t even think being that specific is necessary. It could be “unfortunately it just fizzled!” Which conveys that there wasn’t a lot of interest.

    2. RandomusernamebecauseIwasboredwiththelastone*

      Agreed, this is the time for a well placed “Oh that/him?.. we had a good time but I don’t think much will come of it”
      To the OP:
      It’s not an overshare to mention that you go on dates or to talk about the dating scene anymore than it’s an overshare for your married coworkers to talk about going out with their spouses for dinner or to a movie. Trust me, anyone in a relationship remembers what it’s like to be single and what it’s like to date. Nobody will think any less of you for going out on a date that doesn’t lead to instant romance. In fact you’d get much more raised eyebrows if that happened.

      Don’t be hard on yourself and don’t think that you have to hide or be embarrassed by being single or dating. Chances are they are all rooting for you to have fun and find someone who you click with :)

    3. anon today and tomorrow*

      Yes, this. I think if OP went to the coworkers and asked them to nip any convo in the bud, it would create a mountain out of a molehill and actually cause more drama and speculation. Let it come up naturally. They may never bring it up again or may bring it up in three months when they randomly remember OP went on a date she was excited about.

      A lot of people have “just didn’t work out” dating stories, and they’re nothing to be ashamed of. Anyone who makes a big deal out of hearing that answer is the one with the problem.

  4. The Original K.*

    I was reading this thinking “Where’s the screwup?” OP, you don’t have to tell them anything else. If they ask, say “It didn’t work out.” If pressed (and really, I think “Why didn’t it work out?” is a pretty inappropriate question from colleagues), a vague “Eh, we didn’t sync, I guess” is fine. People probably won’t press beyond that.

    1. Anna*

      Same. I was worried I was going to read a letter about going into painful detail about a random hook-up and this was not that.

    2. Parenthetically*

      Yes, nthing this! I read it again to see if I’d missed some faux pas and I didn’t! OP, you’re normal, you don’t have to feel weird or embarrassed, this is all fine. :)

    3. Erin W*

      My question is, why does she even need to be that vague? She doesn’t need to mention the hookup (that’s really nobody’s business), but since she’s already gushed a bit, what makes her look bad about coming back with, “I really thought he liked me and then he ghosted and can you believe what a jerk?” She could be the Office Tina Turner with this story.

  5. Owlette*

    Hi OP, I don’t want to armchair diagnose you, but I saw a lot of myself in your letter. I have generalized anxiety disorder and a panic disorder, and I angst and angst and angst over a lot of things I think I’ve overshared with my coworkers. In actuality, I work in a really small, tight-knit office with a lot of nice people who genuinely care about me as a person. Sometimes I get super excited about something and can’t stop talking about it, and then the thing happens…and I don’t like it. My coworkers ask how it went, and I feel ashamed for having overshared in the first place. But it’s really okay! My coworkers sincerely don’t remember everything I talk to them about, and I would bet a million bucks that your coworkers won’t remember in a week either. If you are feeling so much shame and anxiety about talking to your coworkers about this date, maybe you should see a counselor, or talk openly to a trusted friend or family member. This letter doesn’t seem like you have a work problem at all! Just maybe some anxiety you have to work out on your own. It’ll be okay, I promise!

    1. prismo*

      Yes! I have an anxiety disorder and the first thing I thought of when reading this is please go see someone who specializes in anxiety. It sounds like you are spiraling and there are concrete tools like cognitive behavioral therapy that can really help with that. (For example, it’s helped me with my tendency to spiral from “I made a tiny mistake at work” to “I’m incapable of having a career and should just stay at home for the rest of my life.”) Apologies if I am misreading this, you already know you do/don’t have anxiety, etc., but in the event that you haven’t considered this possibility I just have to point it out.

    2. Mary*

      Yes, I felt reading this that the problem was that your guilt and shame was out of proportion with what actually happened. If you feel this awful about the situation, please consider talking to someone about that feeling. You haven’t done anything wrong and you don’t deserve to be living with this level of self-loathing and fear.

    3. OP*

      So I’m the OP. Yes I do have anxiety so you’re spot on there. I do take medication but I’ve decided to go talk with a therapist just to hash this out. My friends have been rocks through this. This whole situation is embarrassing but it does feel like something that can be overcome. Hell I even feel proud of myself just being able to admit what happened and that it’s not something I deserve. So slowly getting there.

      1. Owlette*

        Therapy is so helpful, especially if you catastrophize situations, and I’m so glad you decided to talk to a therapist. I know it’s easier said than done, but please try not to be embarrassed. You did absolutely nothing to be embarrassed about!

      2. Can't Think of a Name*

        Good for you OP! I have anxiety too, particularly around dating, and dating while anxious seriously sucks. Honestly, talking about dating/relationships with my therapist is a big reason I’m in a happy relationship now – she was my common sense filter, and helped me view things objectively and figure out what I really wanted, and how I wanted to be treated. Plus, I could endlessly nitpick and analyze every little text and interaction (which my friends eventually got sick of), and not feel like I was being a burden to her or annoying since she was literally being paid to listen to me lol.

        Good luck! I’m rooting for you!!

      3. Not So NewReader*

        OP, think for a minute. Suppose this very same sequence of events happened to your coworker instead of you. Now this is a coworker who you like, she does a good job, etc.

        What do you think about this coworker? How does that compare with what you are thinking of your own setting? Don’t answer here, just think about how you would respond to someone else in a similar setting.

      4. Avasarala*

        Hang in there OP! I have heard and shared so many hyped-up stories about potential dates that didn’t end up going anywhere. Honestly I have forgotten them all. Sometimes I’ll be like “Wait, didn’t my friend say she had a date…? Huh well she didn’t mention it again so I guess nothing interesting happened.” Anyone who gives it more time and attention than that is more invested in Your Life The Soap Opera than Your Life As Lived In Reality As A Human. Those people can get frozen out or fed wild lies (“He was kind of weird, his eyes are this gold color? And he’s super pale, and kept sniffing me… And he sparkles in the sunlight, do you think that’s weird?”)

      5. Courageous cat*

        Honestly, what’s interesting here is that it’s really… not embarrassing, like not at all really. This is all very much your internal reaction, which (as someone who also has anxiety) seems like your anxiety is really driving the narrative on. Don’t feel you have to “overcome” this so much as just let it go!

      6. Rebecca in Dallas*

        You’ve definitely made more out of this situation in your own head! Trust me, I do it all the time, lately I joked that the title of my autobiography would be “Creating Problems that Don’t Exist.” Your coworkers will not even be thinking about this next week, I can almost guarantee. But I can totally relate to the feeling of ruminating over something until it just feels like A Very Big Deal. Glad you are working with your therapist about those feelings!

      7. Erin W*

        Good for you, and you have nothing to be embarrassed about–not because a guy didn’t stick with you (his loss) and not because you have anxiety. Welcome to that club. Actually I’ve been a member of both clubs. We are legion. We have value.

  6. Just Employed Here*

    Echoing Alison here: no big deal.

    You may feel personally very disappointed in this connection not going any further, but that’s not something you need to show your colleagues. Complain about it to your (non-work) friends, if you need to get it out of your system. Or us, the AMA commentariat. :-) Just be vague and breezy at work.

  7. k8*

    i think to you this is a BIG DEAL because “It was so exciting because I haven’t been out in a while due to low self-esteem from previous relationships.”– but it’s really not a big deal at all! It’s great that you put yourself out there and tried dating. It’s okay that it didn’t quite work out. It’s not a personal reflection on you, your worth, or anything like that. It’s easier said than done, but try and see if you can reframe it in your mind. I was right where you are a few months ago, and once I was able to let go of the whole “OMG I HAVENT BEEN ON A DATE IN FOREVER THIS IS THE FIRST DATE IT DIDN’T WORK IM DOOOOOMED” thing and approach it more as, well, a fun, casual thing, I felt MUCH better. (Also, going out with other people works to distract the mind, as well!)

    And hey, at least you got laid, right?

  8. JokeyJules*

    I think you’ve done nothing wrong here. it can definitely be sort of embarrassing when things don’t work out, but that’s all it is! something that didn’t work out. you didn’t do anything wrong, and i’m sure your coworkers will understand.

    one thing i like to remind myself when it feels like my coworkers are getting a bit too invested in something like that, is that it’s work and we are all bored.

  9. Jo*

    Alison is spot on, and I wanted to add that also, what happened to you here is far, far, far, FAR more the norm than the opposite. I would say almost 9 times out of 10, when you meet up with someone in person that you met online, the chemistry doesn’t transfer. Far more often than not, it falls flat or fizzles out after 1-3 dates, because your physical energies just didn’t click the way your virtual ones did. Adjusted, mature, reasonable adults realize this, and know that going in, and don’t have any expectations (hope, maybe, but not expectations) because they know that that’s the nature of such things and it’s just how online dating works. You’ll occasionally run into someone who for some reason Doesn’t Get This, but they’re the exception, not the rule. Trust me, no one here is judging you, because you’ve done nothing wrong at all.

    See Alison’s ole’ Cardinal Rule that she’s mentioned from her online dating blog days! :)

    1. RandomusernamebecauseIwasboredwiththelastone*

      I’d say this is true for people who you meet in the RW too. I dated long before online dating sites became mainstream (or really existed for the most part) and meeting someone in a bar or through friends was the norm. Things worked out just as you described for those types of meetings too.

      What you describe, I suspect, has been the norm for dating since the dawn of time :)

      1. Polymer Phil*

        I disagree. In the old days when a guy had to work up the nerve to ask a woman in a bar or a friend group for her phone number, people were more apt to give each other another chance after an okay but not great first date. In the Internet era, it’s much easier to get a first date but much harder to get a second one.

        1. RandomusernamebecauseIwasboredwiththelastone*

          Ah, yes, but then you had the factor that if a guy worked up the nerve to ask a woman out, there were plenty of them who would agree to go out because they were asked, even if they didn’t think the outcome was likely to be a good one.

          But don’t get me wrong… dating can be fun and suck no matter how the asking out is accomplished.

        2. Smarty Boots*

          LOL, I must be a stone cold beeyotch because I never had trouble declining a second date if the first one wasn’t great. I did feel bad for the person who asked for the second date, but not enough to go out with them.

        3. Birch*

          Aaaand that’s a bad thing how? The world of choice is opened up for people to find the best match they possibly can, and it’s now socially acceptable to not waste time on someone who isn’t compatible. Women don’t have to settle for the first guy who’s interested, and everyone has a better chance of finding the kind of partner they want. It’s not about getting a second date.

      2. Jo*

        Very true! The only thing that I think has made it somewhat worse in the age of online dating is how easy it is for folks to create a really false sense of intimacy with one another. Back in the day when there weren’t texts and messages and tons of emailing, you didn’t really have any other option besides meeting up in person (and maybe phone) to see if you liked each other, so you were able to figure that out hella quick. With online dating, more and more people become convinced that their 10 page emails, incessant texts, and cute flirty messages all before even being in the same room with each other for the first time means that they have “a deep connection,” when they really, really don’t. Then you meet in person and it’s *womp womp*, and people feel insanely disappointed that it wasn’t the rosy perfect narrative they’d built up in their heads. It’s very easy to form a TON of expectations off of very limited information that really don’t serve you well once the actual date happens.

        I was on the receiving end of this once, waaaaay back when I was still dating dudes. An online prospect got far, far, far, FAR too attached to me than what was normal or healthy (all the while pretending that he knew How This Worked and saying he didn’t have any expectations, just hope) because we chatted for quite a while before meeting up (there was forced distance between us, and I was hesitant, but I naively assumed I was dealing with a mature adult who understood that some VERY mild flirting and a few nice talks via text/phone wasn’t a promise of anything). When we met in person, I was totally repulsed by him (which, while the fact that I didn’t yet know I was LGBT probably contributed to, would’ve been the case even if I were straight – he was dreadful in person). I communicated kindly we would not be pursuing a romantic relationship any further, and he was so devastated and furious about it that 2 years later (during which I came out, and he pretended to be supportive and totally over it) in the middle of a political disagreement on Facebook, I got a scathing DM about how I was a deceitful liar who used him to confirm my sexuality and that I’d led him on and I HAD MADE HIM LOVE ME AND HOW DARE I REJECT HIM LIKE THAT WITHOUT GIVING HIM A CHANCE. And oh, I’d lied to him, because I TOTALLY KNEW I was a lesbian the whole time, because “LGBT people know who they are by the time they’re kids, so I know you’re not telling the truth when you say you didn’t know.”

        Gee, I really missed out, didn’t I?

        (Yes, he did wear fedoras.)

        1. RandomusernamebecauseIwasboredwiththelastone*

          Oh dear, well surely he was snapped right up based on his winning personality /s

          I get what you’re saying, one thing at least in the RW version of meeting and dating you at least had the whole “are they attractive to me” thing worked out. Unless you were a victim of the dreaded blind date.

        2. anon today and tomorrow*

          And oh, I’d lied to him, because I TOTALLY KNEW I was a lesbian the whole time, because “LGBT people know who they are by the time they’re kids, so I know you’re not telling the truth when you say you didn’t know.”

          LMAO. I don’t know why so many straight people believe this is true????? Sure, a lot of people know when they’re kids, but a lot of people also figure it out later in life.

          I’ve definitely gotten my fair share of “wait, you only figured out you were bi in your late 20s?/never dates the same sex until your 30s?”on dates and have gone to support groups with people in their 50s, 60s, 70s, etc. who only figured it out late in life.

          1. Jo*

            Preach, sister (brother? Person? Not sure what gender you are).

            But yeah, that line REALLY stuck out at me while he was laying into me. I was shocked that someone could be that ignorant and not get how sexuality is really, REALLY not that simple for a LOT of people (I, too, have met folks in their 60s just now living their truth), but then I realized that he actually was TOTALLY aware of it, and he was just pretending not to be in a desperate attempt to grasp at anything and everything he could to villainize me. If he could direct all his rage and hatred and loneliness and self-loathing at me, then he didn’t have to confront the extreme embarrassment/mortification he felt about letting himself get so foolishly carried away with something that wasn’t even real yet. He always went out of his way to preach about what a feminist and LGBT supporter he was, too, and that was what taught me that if you’re crowing it loudly like that, I should immediately be a little wary of you. It was through that process I learned how many “progressive” men will use all the right rhetoric and justice-oriented language to try to make women sleep with them – but then when it doesn’t work, the truth and misogyny comes out.

            It also really highlighted how many people seem to think changing one’s mind isn’t a thing, instead opting for the conspiratorial view that they were “stringing me along.” It’s like it’s never occurred to them that someone could meet them in person and go “oh, wait, nevermind.” Nope, you knew from the beginning you weren’t into it and lied and deceived them. Because…Reasons? Like, what, do you think that if someone breaks up with you after a longterm relationship they were just “stringing you along” the whole time? Good grief.

            Congrats on your discovery as well! I will say, I’ve dated nothing but women since being in my thirties and have had a GRAND TIME of it. It’s been a blast, and I’ve not encountered any such nonsense with my lady friends, so far at least. Not to say it doesn’t happen, but it’s nice to share intimacy with folks who understand my lived experience. One of the pluses of being queer, IMHO.

            1. Khlovia*

              The line that jumped out at me was the one about giving him a chance. Right, because all women owe all men a chance at them, even after the woman has concluded, “Ew, no.” Because all men are ENTITLED to a chance at all women; and a second chance, and a third…. Because women don’t have the right to come to their own conclusions. Because men are supposed to judge women, not the other way around. Grrrrr….

        3. LJay*

          Yeah, it seems like there are two approaches to online dating.

          One where you’re really dating online and sending tons of messages and emails and really getting to know each other before you meet in person.

          And one where you use online to connect you with the person, but the goal is to meet in person quickly and form a relationship from there.

          I’ve had much more success with the second method. My boyfriend, when he was online dating, had a goal to get a phone number or a set date within 7 message exchanges. Mine wasn’t that rigid, but if we hadn’t met in person within 2 weeks I moved on.

          Extended periods of time just allowed me to get overly invested in the online version of the person. And set me up for disappointment if they were different in person than they presented themselves, or if I just pictured them differently that they actually were in person (sometimes there was intent to mislead or at least to show themselves in the best possible light. Sometimes it was me filling in the blanks in a way that just didn’t match with reality).

          It’s also hard for me to feel a spark with someone just online.

          And I found the more extended the time was before meeting the more likely it was for someone to get cold feet and just not show for a meeting, or put off agreeing to meet indefinitely, etc.

          1. Jo*

            Truth. We admittedly did the first, but only because of the forced distance, and I was definitely hesitant because I knew it wasn’t a good idea. I made an exception because he seemed (at the time) the “perfect match” on paper, so I YOLO-ed it. Lesson DECIDEDLY learned.

            Now? Even if the lady in question looks like she could be My Future Wife, I text her three times exactly – one to say hi, one to set the date, and one to confirm the date the day before. That’s it. No pre-date texting or long messages or chatting on the phone. I am VERY firm about it, and it’s served me very well. Let’s see if I want to make out with you (and you with me) upon meeting you in person, and if it’s a go, then we can get into the deeper stuff.

        4. Anon Anon Anon*

          This is one reason I have such a hard time with dating these days. I meet a lot of people who want to text a lot, or people seem to assume that if we’re texting a lot, that means we’re dating? To me, texting doesn’t mean much. It can be fun, but it’s more like a form of entertainment and a way to form a casual friendship, nothing else. I’m shocked when people attach more significance to it or when it’s used as a substitute for getting to know someone in person. Or when people expect certain things to happen in person just because you’ve been texting. And when you haven’t expressed any interest and the person sends you random photos of them self as if it’s supposed to elicit some kind of reaction by itself without any explanation. To me, all of that seems weird. I’m holding out for someone who wants to hang out and talk and do stuff like people did back in the day.

  10. Hiring Mgr*

    I’m more interested in the “happily married” woman who’s curious about Tinder…. That’s the real story here!

    1. Ella*

      I actually have had numerous friends who are married or in committed relationships steal my phone to swipe through people on tinder for me. I think they see it as people watching/a fun game they don’t get to play (and the whole process is pretty gamified on the app, so it makes sense) and they want to live vicariously for a bit.

      1. Annabelle*

        I go on and off tinder all the time and I always view the profiles as similar to collecting Pokémon cards. Is it the greatest view? Probably not. But it does make it more fun!

      2. The Original K.*

        Me too, when I was on Tinder. People who have been partnered since before dating apps were a thing tend to find it fascinating.

      3. Dance-y Reagan*

        Yeah, this. I’m an old married since before most people used cell phones, and the opportunity to people-watch “dating” as a concept isn’t something you can easily do in public anymore. Everything is virtual and less transparent, so I’m curious about people’s experiences.

        Back in the day: old couple smiles fondly at starry-eyed teens at the soda shop. Now: married colleague hangs over your shoulder to learn about dating apps.

    2. Lady Ariel Ponyweather*

      That’s where I thought this letter was going: the married woman used Tinder, things went wrong and OP was being blamed.

    3. Typhon Worker Bee*

      Eh, I’ve had my single friends show me how it works before, and “helped” them review profiles while we’ve been out for a drink (much hilarity ensued). I’ve been married since before online dating went mainstream, but it’s such a prevalent part of popular culture that I just wanted to see it for myself!

      (One of my best friends is still together with one of her Tinder matches – he just moved into her place last month! Who knew!)

    4. Tara2*

      It’s probably not that interesting. I had been in a relationship for 8 years and asked one of my single friends about it just because people reference it a lot sometimes and you can start to feel out of the loop. It’s like a new fad, but one you aren’t a part of and can’t really join so you just want to at least know what its about so you don’t feel so old just because you’re in a relationship.

      1. Miss Pantalones en Fuego*

        Yeah I’ve asked single people to explain it to me because it is referenced a lot and I have never used it. I suppose I might try it if I were single.

    5. Mystery Bookworm*

      I actually think this is pretty common! Both my partner and I were kind of fascinated by watching our friends ‘swipe’ when Tinder first became popular.

      I don’t really think there’s likely much more to it other than humans tend to be fascinated by the pursuit of love, especially as it evolves and changes — and even if you’re in a happy relationship!

    6. Antilles*

      With the way OP phrased it, I could see this as just being innocent curiosity.
      I don’t know how old you are, but I’m old enough that I can assure you that until the past 5-10 years, there was absolutely a huge stigma to meeting dates/partners over the Internet. A guy is trying to meet people online? He must be a creep or weirdo who couldn’t get a date any other way. A girl is using an online dating site? That’s so sad for her. And similarly judgmental assumptions.
      This has definitely faded away and online dating is completely commonplace…but if the woman is older and has been married for a decade-plus, it’s possible that she’s not up on that. So she’s asking “what kind of guys can you meet online” not because she’s looking, but because she’s surprised at the idea that even good, normal guys use apps/online dating nowadays.

      1. RandomusernamebecauseIwasboredwiththelastone*

        I remember when people would freeze if you asked them how they met. They’d tell you in a low quiet voice they met on an online dating site while looking around to see if anyone was listening.

        So yeah, I’m in that group that mainly met people in bars and through friends. So have no frame of reference or hands on experience with dating sites. I think when I was single, things like speed dating and lunch date events were the equivalent.

        1. I Wrote This in the Bathroom*

          The guy I had my first post-divorce LTR with, (two years), had met me on OKC and our first date was at an outdoor concert. Whenever people asked him, he’d get a very subtle deer-in-the-headlights look, and say “We met at an outdoor concert”.

          1. LurkieLoo*

            My partner and I met online and the answer is “At Starbucks in Town.” I usually then chime in “but we discovered each other online.”

            1. Gerry*

              Lol! I pretend to have met my husband in a similar way but we met online. I think online dating is great and it’s clear just from the posts it has worked out well for many!

        2. FaintlyMacabre*

          Ha, my ex was embarrassed about meeting online. So we would tell people we met through a mutual friend. And not mention that our mutual friend was the internet.

        3. pony tailed wonder*

          I am the first in my family to not meet my s/o in a bar. My dad met my mom at a bar when she was completely sloshed. She demanded that he pay for all her friends dinners that night and he did. He wasn’t supposed to approach her because she outranked him but when she fell off her barstool while drunk, he picked her up. He was also drunk. They had one date after that and then got married. Their one date was that he showed up at her place with a six pack and they went to a movie that they cannot remember. They have been married for 54 years now. I think the first time that they were both sober was a few days into the honeymoon.

      2. anon today and tomorrow*

        There’s definitely still some of that stigma for online dating. It’s not as common as it used to be, I know it hasn’t gone away entirely. In my experience, it still tends to be, “how sad a woman has to resort to online dating”, which kind of sucks for a lot of reasons.

    7. Squeeble*

      Not really. I’m happily married and always enjoy hearing about the latest dating apps and trends. It’s just a fun curiosity.

    8. Anonymoosetracks*

      Lol, no, this is me, too- not at all interested in using Tinder myself but I am SO fascinated when I watch my friends use it. It’s mesmerizing to see how different people market themselves. It’s a people-watching thing for me.

      1. Flower*


        I’m happily partnered (engaged, actually) and have been for about five years. I was 18 when we got together. Personally, casual dating/casual sex just isn’t something I can ever imagine myself being interested in. And I’m totally curious about dating apps and have gotten basic information from others. I have no interest in using it myself, but it’s like a peek into how other people interact with the world, and that’s pretty fascinating.

        1. Flower*

          I haven’t been engaged for about five years… just partnered. The engaged part is relatively new. Phrasing is not always my forte.

    9. Sloan Kittering*

      If anything is the takeaway for OP, I’d say that it’s good to push off the bored married people who want to “take a walk on the wild side” by observing your single life. This is guaranteed to drive a wedge between me, the single specimen, and the interlocutor – because it’s fun for them, but it’s vulnerable and awkward and actually a really big deal emotionally to me. It makes me feel like crap when people want to “quiz” me on internet dating (many of them want me to pull up my profile so they can play around) when they are happily coupled up with their college boyfriend and never had to enter the meat market. I don’t want to share funny bad date stories or basically make a joke out of what is actually a real struggle for me, for their amusement, and some people just assume that’s fair game, harmless fun.

    10. ThankYouRoman*

      I got to explain online dating to my mother. A woman who’s been with my dad for 40 years and hasn’t dated much prior to him. It was mostly “HOW DOES IT WORK? How you know you’re not gonna die?! How do you know anything about these people?!”

      She started watching Catfish, it was delightful.

    11. Nita*

      I think that in ten years’ time I’ll be very interested in how the latest dating apps work. I’ll really need to know what the kids could be dipping their toes into. There was just a post about that on last weekend’s open thread!

    12. Amber T*

      Eh, a lot of my married-for-a-long-time coworkers apparently “Don’t Understand How Dating Works Anymore” (their words). I (a woman) was perfectly fine splitting the check on a first date?! Aghast! My current boyfriend and I met on a dating app? How did I know he wasn’t a crazy serial murderer?? How did we know when it was time to delete the app and become exclusive? (OK that was a legit question.) I’m actually comfortable not letting him pay for me all the time??

      One coworker (who, granted, is a bit more intrusive than others) seems to want to know all the milestones… has he met my parents? When did he meet my friends and what do they think about them? Are we thinking about moving in together? Are we talking marriage?

      I don’t mind the curiosity of it all… but yeah sometimes lines are crossed lol

      1. anon today and tomorrow*

        I got that a lot from coworkers at an old company, but it was also coworkers who “Don’t Understand How Queer Dating Works”, so I received a lot of weird gendered questions like, “but if you’re both women, how do you know who pays?” and couldn’t understand when I said, “it’s the same as when I date men. Either we split it or the person who asked the other out insists on paying”.

        My favorite question was, “how do you know you’re actually on a date with another women and they just didn’t ask you to coffee as a friend?” Which, again, it’s the same as dating a man. It’s pretty obvious most of the time when someone wants a romantic date and not a friend date.

        These questions all came out of nowhere, too, because I tried really hard not to talk about dating at work.

        1. Close Bracket*

          “but if you’re both women, how do you know who pays?”

          The butch, obvs.


          \s, in case it’s not obvious

        2. whingedrinking*

          I once mentioned in passing having gone to a same-sex wedding (two men), and someone asked me, “So which one was the bride?” * facepalm *

    13. pony tailed wonder*

      My married friends helped me write a profile that was much better than what I had. One of them was especially helpful in coming up with nice things to say about myself, I had a tough time with that.

  11. Meh*

    I mean, if you want to save face, you do have the option of just lying about what happened. Tell your coworkers that he was rude to the server, or that he doesn’t like dogs, or some other nearly universal deal breaker. No big deal.

    1. AvonLady Barksdale*

      Or, better yet, just saying he hasn’t asked you out again is enough to earn sympathy. I know there were many, many times when my friends (and yes, even my colleagues) would say things like, “Ugh, he SUCKS, you are awesome!” when the truth was that maybe I was weird or standoffish or uptight about something on the date. Not that this is your scenario, mind you, but trust me, your co-workers are far more likely to think he’s a jerk than to think poorly of you.

      1. sarah*

        this! if a friend or coworker said something like “yeah i thought we had a nice time, but he stopped texting me!” my reaction would definitely be “ugh, what a jerk! you’re too good for him!” not “wow, my friend is a loser who can’t get a second date”

        1. Sloan Kittering*

          With a friend, sure, but for bored coworkers I don’t think I’d really choose to share something that made me feel vulnerable like this. OP shouldn’t feel bad if she decides to pass.

    2. Lexi Kate*

      Or tell it like OP sounds like she wishes she had saw, that it went great until the end when he wanted sex OP declined and now he is not responding to OP. You don’t have to give all the details its your story, you get to decide who knows the truth.

      I would not let my co-workers know I had a one night stand or sex on the first date after it happens. 2 years later is fine, then its a learning experience. This also opens you up if your co-workers know or find someone for you. I met my husband through a co-workers boss who overheard my horrible date story, and had a friend whose son had just broken up.

      1. Jessie the First (or second)*

        Oh no. Please don’t bring up when/if/why/how sex did or didn’t happen at work.

        I don’t think talking about when sex happens or not isn’t an appropriate work topic regardless, whether it’s a first date or 1 year later, and whether the issue is “we had sex and it went great,” “we had sex and not he ghosted,” “he wanted sex and I didn’t” or ANY other variation on the theme.

        Just, no. Nothing shameful about first date sex. Or 1 year later sex. Or whenever/however. But don’t talk about it, or the lack of it, at work.

        1. Lexi Kate*

          I’m not saying give details. It would be easier to lie and say he asked and she declined and now he isn’t calling her back. That is not really details. Keeping the story as close to how it happened is easier to keep track of .

          1. Winter General*

            That’s really inappropriate. The OP didn’t overshare before, they shouldn’t do so now! Sex is not an appropriate topic of conversation at work, and the OP has plenty of other ways to respond that are perfectly appropriate and at least as effective.

      2. Dragoning*

        No, no, no. I would not even make references to a one-night-stand or sex with my coworkers–and I especially wouldn’t completely lie to make myself look “better” in some way–a lot of people might feel judged by that.

    3. Psyche*

      I would probably be even more vague. “The first date was great, but it just kind of fizzled out” or “It became clear that we don’t actually have much in common.”

      1. I Wrote This in the Bathroom*

        I’d go with the second option. I mean, it is literally the end goal of all dating (both online and off) to get to know each other better, so you know if you both want to continue. OP, you two got to know each other better, and realized that you do not, after all, have enough of a connection to continue on. This is in fact what probably happened. This is definitely a good answer to give your coworkers.

  12. EmKay*

    There is absolutely nothing to feel ashamed about here OP. You liked the guy, got carried away, were intimate on the first date, and now he may or may not be freezing you out. So what? It happens all the time, to just about everybody. You have nothing to feel bad about.

    As for the questions from your coworkers, I’d tell them there was a dealbreaker (like he’s allergic to dogs and you have one, or he wants kids and you don’t), and boom it’s over.

  13. Antilles*

    I think this is a case where your perspective makes it seem like it’s a much bigger deal to everyone else than it is.
    From your perspective, this was a huge mistake and you can’t imagine how people aren’t going to follow up and ask questions and check up and want to know details and be excited for you then disappointed to hear it didn’t work out…but everybody else has probably given the entire thing maybe, maybe, maybe 15 seconds of thought total of an occasional – “oh, yeah, I wonder if Janet went out again with that guy she liked” and that’s that.
    Even in close offices, a co-worker’s love life just isn’t something that is high priority on people’s minds.

  14. Loot*

    I completely agree with Alison, you didn’t mess up in any way here. Being very enthusiastic about something that doesn’t work out isn’t a fun situation to be in, but it isn’t a *mistake you made.*

    I also think that this is so normal in today’s dating market that I don’t think you’ll be met with any “ohh you fucked up” or “hah, I told you so!” but rather “yeah, it really sucks.”

  15. Meredith Brooks*

    Gotta agree with Allison on this one. I can’t think of a single reason I would think anything less of you based on what you described. You went out on a date, it didn’t pan out. But, I think I know something of your anxiety or embarrassment. I’m curious if you’re in your 20s? Not to stereotype you, but because in my younger years, I was all too keenly self-aware of all my idiosyncracies and foibles. And younger me would have considered such a situation you described as a black mark on my character. But the truth is, there’s no error here. You may consider sleeping with him a mistake. That’s ok. That does not mean you’re a bad person or a weird person or anything. And even if you consider it a mistake, that doesn’t mean you’re a mistake. It just means you tried something and it didn’t work out. You’ll try something else next time. Cut yourself some slack.

  16. Ella*

    Things petering out after one or two dates is so, so common that it would be truly bizarre if any of your coworkers judged you for it. Honestly, I suspect that if you don’t mention the guy again, your coworkers won’t either. But if one of them does you could say, entirely truthfully, “eh, I had a good time on our date but things didn’t really pan out.”

    The real thing here is to not freak out about it. If you act horrified/ashamed/embarrassed other people will think you have something to be horrified/ashamed/embarrassed about. (Which you absolutely don’t.)

  17. Typhon Worker Bee*

    “since we work in an open office soon they were talking about it loudly and everyone knew. Word even spread to my bosses, one of whom really started asking a lot of questions”

    OP, it sounds like this “oversharing” is really your coworkers’ faults. They sound awfully nosy, especially your boss (this is very definitely not her business!) Hang in there, this will all blow over in a couple of weeks

    1. Alton*

      Yeah, this. When I saw “oversharing” in the title, I was thinking that the OP had gone out of her way to talk about the date or was sharing a lot of TMI details, but that doesn’t sound like the case at all.

      OP, I think the only lesson to learn here is that your bosses and coworkers are more interested in talking about this stuff than you’re comfortable with sharing, and that this puts you on the spot. I don’t think you screwed up, and I definitely don’t think that the fact that the connection isn’t going anywhere makes it a screwup. It’s so normal for dates not to go anywhere.

      1. Sloan Kittering*

        Yep, I don’t think OP did anything wrong but I do think the fact that she’s feeling weird and bad about this now is a sign that she needs to enforce a boundary about this in the future, next time her bored coworkers are prying about her love life.

    2. Nita*

      Agreed. OP, I don’t think you did anything wrong, either at work or with the date, and you shouldn’t be kicking yourself about either. However, your coworkers sound really overwhelming and you might want to work on ways to avoid discussing personal stuff in the office. Maybe pick a couple topics that sound personal but really don’t mean much to you, maybe work on some non-answers like what Alison suggests. It doesn’t sound like you enjoy being the center of attention of an entire office-full of bored coworkers.

  18. MuseumChick*

    Completely agree with Allison. You didn’t do anything wrong here!

    Some scripts you can use:

    “Yeah, it fizzled out.”

    “I don’t see it going anywhere.”

    “Oh, it didn’t work out.”

    “It turned out we were looking for different things.”

  19. Reba*

    OP! I don’t want to say that you are overreacting, because your feelings are yours. But I do want to put in that this situation is so, so, so, so normal. You didn’t do anything wrong! You put yourself out there to date, which is awesome, and you were excited, so you shared with colleagues about that! Then, the spark didn’t catch. Disappointing, but oh well. It’s embarrassing to find that the other person doesn’t feel the way you did, but you’ll get through it, and, we hope, date again and find a better match. (And of course, it would be better if he told you! but sadly that’s not the norm with online matchmaking.)

    FWIW what I find odd is that one of your bosses “started asking a lot of questions” — though it sounds like that’s their personality? So I think Alison’s note about resetting expectations about what personal-life stuff you will discuss at the office is a good one for you. You can say the script in a friendly, upbeat way–it doesn’t have to be all about your embarrassment, just a breezy-yet-firm, “oh I’ve found it’s better for me not to talk about this so much! Thanks for understanding! About those reports…”

    1. OP*

      My boss really has no boundaries. I think she thinks it’s funny to ask super intrusive questions, like she is part of an inside joke. It just makes me cringe. Thankfully she has been out sick for the past few days which has given me enough time to brace myself.

      1. Reba*

        That sounds exhausting. Wishing you strength as you build up your arsenal of boring, non-informative responses!

  20. sheworkshardforthemoney*

    If everyone who had a bad/unsuccessful date took the day off, the economy would come to a halt. Seriously, maybe there should be a Bad Date national holiday. You have nothing to be embarrassed about. It doesn’t matter that it was Tinder, it happens all the time. Maybe this week’s Open Thread could be Bad Dates but in interest of not blowing up the internet, only one story per person.

    1. Lily Rowan*

      Yeah, I also want to confirm for the OP that dating is the worst, and getting ghosted after a really good date is so, so common. If you’re just dipping your toe in the water, it feels awful! But after experiencing it a bunch of times, it….still feels awful, but you learn to keep your expectations low up front, or at least not to share your hopes and dreams with others. In my experience, anyway.

      Good luck, OP!!

  21. Detective Amy Santiago*

    I get the feeling that you’re embarrassed about sleeping with this guy on the first date and I just want to say that you shouldn’t feel bad about that at all. There is nothing wrong with having and exercising your sexuality.

    (I know this isn’t work related, but I still felt like it needed to be said.)

    1. Stuff*

      this was my first thought reading this. Not that you overshared but that you shared what turned out to be a one night stand. As everyone has said you have nothing to be ashamed of. You didn’t screw up. Just breezily say he turned out not to be as great as you thought he was and move on. Your coworkers seem nice and interested in your life. Next time maybe wait a few dates and feel free to gush again :) they just want you to be happy.

    2. I Wrote This in the Bathroom*

      100000++++. Was it good? was it safe? was it by mutual enthusuastic consent? well, then there’s nothing wrong with it! Thank you for saying this. It did need to be said!

    3. LilyP*

      +1000 — no need to beat yourself up as “reckless”, people do this all the time and it’s nothing to be ashamed of! And it’s none of your coworkers business anyway.

    4. Mrs. Dean Winchester*

      I had the same impression when I read the letter. Before I finished, I thought OP’s mistake was going to be oversharing that she slept with her date. As Detective Amy Santiago said, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with exercising your sexuality on a date you’re enjoying, but sharing that news with the whole office would be inappropriate for work.

      OP, you did nothing wrong before, during, or after your date. Sharing general platitudes about being excited for a date or that it went well don’t cross any work boundaries. Most people have been on a date or two with someone who seemed promising before it fizzled out. They will understand if you say something vague about not seeing him again.

  22. Hey Karma, Over here.*

    Remember the five year rule? Is it going to matter in five years? Nope. Let it go. That work for you? Me neither. What works for me is realizing that all the time I’ve spent wondering what other people are thinking about me is a hell of a lot more time than people actually spend thinking about me.
    Nobody really cares if you date this guy or don’t. If you’re happy, they are happy for you, until it’s time for them to think about themselves again. Try this “Yeah, I was super excited to go on a date! The last great date I went on was X. What was your best date?” Guess what, someone is going to jump at the chance to talk about him/herself.

    1. TootsNYC*

      also–for them, this is entertainment. That’s kind of rude, actually, and dismissive of you as a person. So let the knowledge of that color how much you feel obligated to continue to entertain them.

      And remember that this isn’t about YOU, it’s about “them learning about online dating.”

      Just say, “Oh, I haven’t heard from him; I don’t know if we’ll go on a second date. Sometimes it’s like that, online dating is.”

      And if anyone pursues it, your line is: “You are WAY more invested in this than I am!”

      1. Hey Karma, Over here.*

        I was thinking along the lines of “it’s small talk,” They are asking questions about you to be polite. And you want to be polite back. TootsNYC brings up an excellent point, which I think is really what you are asking. “Is it too late to change the boundaries?” No, it is never too late to change the boundaries.
        You don’t want to make anyone at work uncomfortable, but remember that the same rule applies to you.

  23. Amber Rose*

    Sometimes dates just don’t work out. That’s true whether you’re using Tinder or not or whether you sleep with them or not. Would you be feeling as weird about this if you’d just met this guy at a bar or an event or something and hadn’t slept together? I totally get having awkward personal hang ups around sex and dating and stuff, but that kind of thing is not nearly as visible to others as you think.

    Anyways, it’s not like you went into uncomfortable details about what you did with him. You had a date, you were excited, it didn’t work out in the end. A story as old as time. It’s so old that it’s not even interesting to anyone. They’re just going to nod and go “oh that’s too bad” and probably move on to other topics. I’m not even sure this counts as oversharing.

  24. Not Australian*

    A useful get-out for anything potentially embarrassing IMHO is “I’m putting it down to experience and moving on”. That can cover anything from discovering he has unacceptable political views to finding out that his feet smell. If you can fit in a ‘no big deal’ shrug as well, that should pretty much cover it.

    FWIW I suspect people will be less judgemental of what you’re seeing as an error and more admiring that you took a chance and tried something new. In either case you have nothing to feel ashamed of, and I hope your future dating experience is more rewarding.

  25. Dr. Pepper*

    As someone who has had multiple over-sharers for coworkers, I can tell you that nobody cares. They really don’t. Most people are far too concerned with their own lives and problems to give much brain-space to yours. I’ve been told all manner of deeply personal things and embarrassing stories (that I never asked to hear) by coworkers and unless the situation was especially dramatic, I almost immediately forgot all about it. I know it’s hugely embarrassing for you, but for them it’s more of a “raised eyebrow and nod before moving on” type thing. Don’t keep making a big deal of it and people will forget. If you get anyone asking you questions, just breezily say “it didn’t work out, oh well” and change the subject. Consider ahead of time how much you want to share about certain aspects of your life so next time you’ll have something to measure against. I personally tell people as little as possible, but that’s me and my own reticence.

    1. TootsNYC*

      or if they care, it’s “gossip” and “entertainment” for them–you have no obligation to feed that.

  26. Thing1*

    Reading the letter, it sounds a bit to me like you’re ashamed because you slept together and then it didn’t work out? Ignore me if I’m wrong, but that was a lot of what I got. One, while that might not be how you’d prefer to live your life, many people wouldn’t find anything terrible or shameful about that. And two, that’s pretty separate from your co-workers, and I think you may be entangling the two. Who you slept with is none of their business. They don’t know about that part, and even if they did (which they shouldn’t, I’m not advocating telling them), it’s also not their business to judge you for it. I’d suggest trying to separate those two things (how the date went, and what your co-workers think), and also forgive yourself for what happened. Even if you view it as an error of judgement, that happens. I don’t think you need to keep hanging on to it like that.

    1. Linzava*

      This. I remember, from my online dating days, the pressure to hook up even after the first date. I never did, and felt like I was being judged as a tease. Looking back, I would have felt shame either way because I was insecure. Your body, your choice. There’s nothing wrong with hooking up, if you want to, and there’s nothing wrong with not hooking up. Don’t judge yourself through the perceived eyes of another, you can’t win. Also, I met the love of my life through online dating when it was embarrassing to admit it, and I didn’t get any judgements or pressure from him.

      1. Sloan Kittering*

        You really can’t win. If you hook up on the first date, you’re supposed to feel bad about that, especially if it doesn’t end up going somewhere. But if you wait more than one date, you’re teasing him or leading him on and now you might “owe” him something and you really shouldn’t change your mind because that’s cruel. It’s one of those lose-lose situations that happen so often to women.

    2. Elspeth McGillicuddy*

      Yeah, I think the one-night-stand thing is maybe a large part of her embarrassment. It sounds like she probably wouldn’t have been interested if she’d known it wasn’t going to lead anywhere. I’m not sure if the embarrassment because she’s feeling guilty or gullible.

      Either way, her coworkers don’t know about that bit. So it shouldn’t factor into her interactions with them at all.

  27. DKMA*

    OP, I just want to pile on here with everyone and say that from a professional standpoint I think you’ve done great here. I was expecting that you were going to say that you told everyone in your office the nitty gritty details of the date, because that would be the only thing that would actually make this embarrassing.

    You didn’t, you have nothing to be ashamed about, I hope you have some great dates soon.

  28. Eenie*

    Why not say something to your coworkers along the lines of, “Maybe Tinder isn’t the best dating site. Our first date was fun, but I don’t think we’re going to go on a second date after all.” Please do not be ashamed for sleeping with him. You are an adult, and that is something that consenting adults can choose to do. It is none of your coworkers’ business.

  29. CupcakeCounter*

    Echoing all of the others on here that you didn’t to anything wrong and have nothing to be ashamed of. Feel free to lie if you want to save face and say something along the lines of “we met up for drinks and he must have been on his best behavior the other night because a complete 180 happened and it is a serious no-go on my end”. Or since he was texting so much right away just say you got a little creeped out and blocked him. Or say he was a douche and peaced out which means he isn’t the guy for you.
    Better yet, say nothing and when asked just tell them that its a little embarrassing to be the main subject of water cooler talk because of your dating life and would like to tone that down a bit so you don’t have to relive things if they don’t go well or go too well.

  30. BadWolf*

    Since it seemed like discussing your date caught on like wild fire this time, if a new date comes up in the future and people jump all over it when you were only chatting about it with one person, I’d suggest curbing it with a breezy, “Last time I think I cursed it with too much discussion! Don’t want to do that again!”

    If this date comes up again and your coworkers think they want to “helpfully” discuss it (similar to the pre-date discussion, stick with “Oh, it just didn’t pan out.” “I don’t need to dissect it, it just fizzled.” If they’re nice/normalish people, they should drop it.

  31. BC*

    This is real life not a TV drama. One or two date and discussions at work mean nothing and don’t have to be a central feature which all the ends get tied up before the episode/arc ends with everyone knowing all the details.

    Let it go. Your coworkers don’t care long term, its a bit of gossip and it will tail off. “Date was fun” is all you have to say.

  32. CRM*

    OP, don’t be ashamed! What happened to you is called “ghosting”, and for better or worse it’s incredibly common with online dating. I’ve been ghosted on more times than I’d like to admit. Aside from that aspect, online dating can be difficult because you have less context about the person than you would in other situations, so things are less likely to work out anyways. Your coworkers will completely understand!

  33. Wannabe Disney Princess*

    I’ve learned that people will follow your lead. So if you just go in with a shrug and an “eh, it’s not going to work out” and drop it…they will too. A few nosy ones might try to wheedle some extra info out but just stick to a vague answer they will eventually stop.

  34. Person from the Resume*

    Hey, LW you did nothing shameful. Absolutely nothing, IMO you did nothing wrong on your date or related to your date. These things happen with online dating. I got ghosted by a woman after a month of regular communication, a couple of dates, and one afternoon of delight. ;) Her last text to me was she’d call me as soon as she could and then nothing. I tell this as a funny ghosting story. I am somewhat indignant about the last of respect and dishonesty, but that reflects on her and not on me. Most I can say is that I was fooled by her, but that’s because I’m trusting and honest and she talked a good game.

    Your mistake was oversharing about dating at work with your colleagues. That’s not a huge mistake that you can’t come back from. It sure seems like your office is laid back since you didn’t force this on everyone and other people engaged with you. What you need to do is dial it back, and I think Alison’s little white lie cover story is fine. Once the initial thrill wore off, you’re no longer interested in him, or he hates cats or he is an Atlanta Falcons fan and that just shows terrible taste. Whatever you want. It sounds like this relationship is going no where so just tell the white lie to stop this conversation and take this as a lesson learned to never mention dating in the office again until you’re either getting married or bringing a long term partner to the office party.

    And, hey, there is nothing shameful or naïve or wrong with two consenting adults consenting to having consensual sex on their first date. That actually has zero to do with your workplace to (as sex should never be discussed in the workplace), but I recommend you may want to take a look at why you’re perceiving this incident as such a terrible mistake.

    1. Cat Fan*

      Yes, there is so much shame in the tone if the letter. I just want to take a letter writer out for a drink and say, hey, it’s a new millennium. You do what you like!

    1. AvonLady Barksdale*

      I would counter with the fact that a lot of people out there are sketchy, and I trust the OP to listen to her instincts. In fact, she did well to tell people she was on a first date so they’d be aware.

      In other words: not helpful.

      1. CaliCali*

        It’s just one way of many to meet people. There are sketchy people at bars, in Meetup groups, at work, at church. And someone fading out isn’t inherently sketchy, just a bit disrespectful.

      2. Justin*


        In fact, within this irrelevant bubble, they certainly aren’t any sketchier than people you meet in any other way.

        But, gotta judge, right?

    2. Some Sort of Management Consultant*

      The LW mentions the risk in her letter.
      Do you really think there is anyone reading this blog isn’t aware that there are dangerous people online?
      There are also wonderful people, and missing out on those connections is a shame, when all that’s needed is some caution.

      Don’t scare people unnecessarily. It’s unhelpful and unnuanced.

      1. Courageous cat*

        Yeah, why is this necessary? It’s just derailing and I would think/hope most of us are grown adults who can be trusted to evaluate their own safety

    3. Hiring Mgr*

      Not to be an alarmist, I’ve heard reports of human trafficking, so always meet in a public place. You don’t want to end up in one of those auctions from Taken.

      1. Nita*

        I’ve never heard that one in connection with a dating site, but the advice to keep the first few dates to a public place is sound. There’s really no foolproof way to tell from an online profile that the person is not creepy, or even that they are who they say they are. Or they could just be horribly boring, in which case you can at least people-watch instead of enduring a long intimate conversation with them.

      2. Ask a Manager* Post author

        Come on, the OP isn’t asking for dating app advice. (And yeah, that’s pretty alarmist and “meet in a public place” is pretty much the first rule people know about online dating.)

      3. Sack Hiring Mgr*

        Wow. I know you like to think you’re funny and edgy, but this is just appallingly ignorant and inappropriate. Get over yourself.

        1. Hiring Mgr*

          No harm meant..apologies if inappropriate. AAM can delete if she feels it’s over the line. Also, i’m far from edgy.

      4. JamieS*

        Thanks to this post I’m going to stop agreeing to meet men for the first time at remote cabins in the woods and abandoned warehouses. Appreciate the heads up about meeting in public places.

    4. ThankYouRoman*

      Yeah…be careful everywhere you go. Even internet support groups for cancer survivors or eating disorders or band fan clubs have sketchy creepers who are sometimes dangerous.

    5. Venti Square*

      Some people are sketchy. That’s true online, on dating websites and in meatspace. I don’t think that’s going to be news to the OP!

  35. Jaybeetee*

    Can I speculate that it sounds like you work with assorted older/married people who are getting vicarious thrills through your dating escapades? (I had this at a workplace where I was online-dating a lot, and two of the colleagues I worked most closely with were middle-aged women in committed relationships). If they’ve been asking a zillion questions about your Tinder date, they’ll probably be at most somewhat sympathetic that it hasn’t panned out, and may just encourage you to keep at it. If you feel badly about letting things go too far physically, just remember your boundaries for the future – don’t beat yourself up over making a mistake (if you even think of it as one). And remember, online dating can be… challenging. Everyone’s talking to/seeing multiple people at first, everyone has their own stuff and baggage going on. Just try to remember to have a good time, and rejection may not be at all about you.

    1. Sloan Kittering*

      Yep, older married coworkers whose kids are settled can be VERY PUSHY because they’re bored and looking for drama. Its fine if you like drama, but I realize I need to avoid those kinds of topics with a ten foot pole and be as boring as possible or else they take a mile and end up way over-invested.

    2. A New Level of Anon*

      Don’t give these older/married people vicarious thrills through your dating life, because they may also be subtly judging you for not being in a long-term stable relationship. If you’re mostly working with people in more stable relationships, there’s some chance that info about your dating life, no matter how PG it is, may undermine the way you’re seen professionally.

  36. Ok_Go_West*

    “I have a date” and / or “I had a date and the chemistry wasn’t there” really isn’t an overshare–take it from someone who is really uncomfortable around oversharing at work. Sounds like you engaged in normal human banter about normal human activities.

  37. Observer*

    OP, I’m wondering about the intensity of your reaction here. As others have said, this seems to be a fairly normal event. And while, yeah, there was a bit of oversharing that could have been a LOT worse (you didn’t tell everyone all the minute details of the date, after all) and it’s as much on everyone else as on you. And, to be honest, the occasional overshare is not the end of the world, especially since you weren’t pushing this on people.

    So, you didn’t do anything wildly unprofessional that you need to “come back from”. Nor is this outcome any sort of reflection on you or your “date-ability”.

    I did notice that you seem to be worried that your boss is likely to really keep going on about it. Allison’s scripts are really good for that. Choose one or two of the and the keep on repeating them. Not because you need to keep any secrets here, but because that will eventually be boring enough so that it does down by itself and you don’t have to keep rehashing the details of a relationship that was obviously not meant to be.

  38. McWhadden*

    People talk about their personal lives at work! You didn’t share super personal information or TMI. The only thing that makes this different is the app component. But that’s just a normal part of dating now.

    Or you could amp it up to a thousand and pretend to get engaged.

    1. Mimi Me*

      Years ago – way before Tinder – I used to have bad dates. EX: I was really excited to go on a date with a guy I had met while out with friends. Co-workers asked about the date both before and after the event. I shared my excitement prior to the date, but after the date was awful I shared only that it didn’t work out. This is basically the same thing the LW is doing…with the added element of Tinder. It’s completely normal!!!!

      1. McWhadden*


        And, let’s be clear, the whole sleeping with someone on a first date is hardly new to the internet age either! (Nor is there anything wrong with that as long as everything was legal and consensual.)

  39. Cat Fan*

    I feel bad for the letter writer that she sees the need to say, “things went farther than I intended…”. You liked the guy and slept with him, and there’s nothing wrong with that. I also agree with everyone else that it’s perfectly fine to just drop the conversation with your co-workers at this point. It didn’t work out, there’s always others people to meet.

    1. Birch*

      +1000 this exactly. That bit of info has ZERO to do with the point of the letter and it’s infuriating to me that OP felt the need to put in a disclaimer.

        1. Birch*

          The thing is, that whole tidbit has nothing to do with it. OP didn’t need to tell US the details, considering they didn’t tell the coworkers! It’s like OP assumed that’s what we would think based on using a dating app and felt like she had to put that disclaimer in because of us.

          1. RandomusernamebecauseIwasboredwiththelastone*

            I agree, I think there’s way more to this than the ‘oversharing at work’ thing. I think the OP’s reluctance to share the outcome* of her date to her coworkers. I think the anxiety is more rooted in the OP’s self image and anxiety born from the events of the date itself and what happened with the date (him not returning her texts).

            I hope it didn’t sound like I thought we needed the information, because I don’t think we do. But now that it’s out there it may help explain where the OP is coming from and might allow for the comments to address, what I think, is bothering the OP more than the question on the surface would indicate. (does that make sense? I feel like I’m not explaining myself well)

            *and by outcome I’m referring to if the dating will continue vs. any sort of intimacy that occured

  40. CaliCali*

    As someone who’s recently re-entered the dating game, you did nothing wrong! You shared a work-appropriate level of information (going on a date, it went well, you were excited — those are all fine things to share with coworkers), but it didn’t go anywhere, which for sure is disappointing — but also, very normal, and also an OK thing to share. There’s no shame in things not working out with dating, whether you sleep with someone on the first date or the 200th. No one is going to judge you for things not working out either, which I’m guessing is what’s underlying a little bit of your shame here as well (I fight that feeling too). But in similar situations, I’ve just said “it didn’t end up working out” or, if you want to be a little more personal, you could even say “He seemed excited at first, but now he’s being distant, which is upsetting but it’s how it goes.”

    Also, tbh, while people can get interested in your dating life, it tends to be very superficial. They want to know any new info, but after that, they really aren’t thinking about you at all. Dating is such an anxiety-invoking thing and if you’re like me, anxiety shoves it to the forefront of your mind, but if I think about my coworkers’ dating lives, I know some cursory details and that’s it.

  41. Essess*

    What’s wrong with simply saying “after we spent some more time chatting together, we decided that we have too different of interests and have moved on”. It’s pretty basic.

  42. Birch*

    Alison’s penultimate paragraph is right on point. I would think in 2018 we are done shaming people for online dating considering how prevalent it is. This letter reeks of internalized shame that is so, so unnecessary. OP, you do not have to pretend that you didn’t want to sleep with your date, and that fact has nothing to do with how excited you are or should be about a new partner or how much you should tell your coworkers about them. The expectation that women pretend to not want physical intimacy is based in the ability of men to sell a woman’s virginity to another man because that’s where a woman’s value is. Stop perpetuating this gross idea. Stop being ashamed of what you want. You do not have to create a perfect relationship out of a single date to wash away the sin of having used a dating app.

    No one asked my opinion about Tinder, etc. in general, but in my experience the people who are loudest in declaiming the “hookup apps” either 1. only use them to hook up themselves or 2. have never used them. In my experience a lot of lonely people just want to chat. There are plenty of sketchy, terrible people everywhere, and there aren’t a higher proportion of them on dating apps. Finally, re: hookups via apps, the stigma makes no sense. It’s far easier for a predator or a generally shady person to pick up a drunk date willing to hook up at a bar when they’re already out and potentially already compromised than to have to message them online to set up a date at a later time. People who hook up on dating apps want to hook up and that is perfectly fine!

  43. Justin*

    I thought you were saying your mistake was sharing you slept with him, because I misread it. (No shame in doing so of course, but I would see why you might feel weird if you said it.)

    Having figured out that you didn’t say that… Yeah, no, s’all good. Please feel no shame.

  44. ThankYouRoman*

    You did nothing wrong. They’re thirsty for a young fresh still dating POV and latched onto you to live vicariously through your adventures. Those adventures include dillweeds who ghost you after what you thought was a good first date.

    You’re going to live this down. Tell them it turns out the spark died quickly. Don’t add details about your early hookup.

    My partner and I resisted the first date hookup but jumped into things within the first two weeks. We’re going on five years now and I regret nothing.

    Good luck and love yourself, you’re wonderful and deserve it. Xxoo

  45. Health Insurance Nerd*

    Oh LW, you are being so hard on yourself! I promise you did not screw up, these things happen!

  46. voyager1*

    LW: One of the things I was told a long time ago about dating that helped me a lot when I was younger was this “a first date is just meeting someone, don’t think of it as a date and don’t count it as one. Doing such takes a lot of pressure off.” I met a few women when I was single back in the “olden days” ( ya know mid 2000s LOL) and kept it to thinking it was just coffee when first meeting. This really helped me with my natural nervousness, since I really didn’t date much in high school or when I was in the military. I have really honestly only had two long term relationships and one of those women I married… So take that for what that is worth :)

    I don’t think you really did anything wrong here.

  47. JulieCanCan*

    OP please don’t stress! You did what many of us have done, and it’s certainly nothing to be ashamed of. Honestly – this stuff happens! In a year you’ll laugh about it. Just act cool and pretend you don’t give a hoot – others will follow your lead. If you make it a big deal, people will think it’s a big deal. If you brush it off, everyone will be talking about something new by Friday.

    I can totally relate and understand exactly how you’re feeling. After getting divorced about 10 years ago, I went on a dating/slutty frenzy and about half of the guys I was involved with were clients. This was a major MAJOR no-no (for lack of a better term!) and I stupidly shared details with my work bff. I also did some REALLY dumb things in drunken stupors at work events held in bars/restaurants. Things I don’t remember, like making out with a client (a client I had never met before!) in the middle of a restaurant. Things that I found out about when my reports told me I did them the next day. It was pretty bad. But I kept my head down and people laughed at it and then eventually there was another newer thing to gossip about that didn’t involve me.

    It always feels like a big deal when it’s in your head, but I promise you soon people won’t even remember you went on the date. It takes a little time for it to fizzle, but it will happen.

    Good luck! Sorry you’re going through this!

    1. anon for this*

      I wouldn’t slut shame you, not should you slut shame yourself. Not until men are called sluts for engaging in the same behavior that is condemned in women.

  48. Shay*

    This is buried at the bottom of AAM’s response when it really should be up at the top:

    “It’s true that there’s a lesson here to be more cautious in what you share at work, especially about something like a first date where you can’t predict how it’s going to go.”

    Tinder is known to be less of a dating site and more of a hook-up site. It may have been poor judgement, from a professional perspective, to share so much with such a wide group (it doesn’t sound like this was a side conversation with your closest work friends) – rather, OP took on educating others about the site and opened the door for follow-up questions about the date. The remorse is clear though and this won’t happen again … just use the good suggested scripts to shut down the follow-on chatter/questions.

    1. Miss Pantalones en Fuego*

      Eh, I think it’s not necessarily true. It seems to be just the latest way of meeting people. I certainly had plenty of matches that only wanted sex back in the dark ages of Match, etc.

  49. Mother of Cats*

    I met my boyfriend of three years through Tinder AND work. I did a presentation on Tinder and online marketing for management (I proposed building an app for our business), and had the app on a company iPad. The president got really excited and swiped right on EVERY guy. After the presentation I was going to delete the app, then saw this cute guy’s messages. It was never a one-night stand or fling for us, and we’re still going strong.

    I met a lot of dopes on Tinder, but my boyfriend made all those bad dates worth my time. OP don’t beat yourself up over this. Your coworkers have all had embarrassing dating experiences, and they’re not going to dwell on yours.

  50. Unreal*

    You’ve really nothing to be ashamed of or embarrassed about OP and you can share as little or as much as you like with your coworkers depending on ur relationship with them. I’d just go for the very simple – he wasn’t the one and laugh it off. I imagine the difficult part here is it hurts because you liked him a lot and you feel a little humiliated – talk it over with a close friend and forget about this guy.

  51. MissDisplaced*

    Meh, you didn’t really screw up with this bit of oversharing, but it’s something to be aware of and lesson learned. If your office mates continue to bring it up, I’d just shrug and pass it off as a dating no-go type of thing, or that you’re re-thinking the whole Tinder thing entirely.
    Most will sympathize.

  52. Utoh!*

    Hrm, I think others have said this but Tinder, to me, is more a “hook-up” site, not a “dating” site. So not sure what OPs expectations were. It sucks that it did not work out in the best way, and really you can just say that it did not work out, onward and upward! :)

    I have made a LOT of mistakes in my dating life, well before there was a Tinder, it’s just life unfortunately.

  53. bopper*

    You just start saying …”Its weird…we had a great date but now I am getting one word responses. I don’t think this one is going to last.”

  54. KillItWithFire*

    This isn’t you “messing up” OP, this is you being brave and inclusive enough with your office community to share your life. Tinder Boy is a prat, that’s not on you. And it isn’t a reflection of your abilities or person.

  55. the one who got away*

    OP: When I was in my 20s I was single for a really really long time, and when I did go on dates I was super secretive about it at work because I didn’t want people all up in my business. So when I went on a (super casual) date with a completely regular dude and he sent me A DOZEN LONG-STEMMED RED ROSES at work the following Monday, my coworkers basically thought I was engaged.

    And they would. not. shut. up. about it. Or stop asking for details. And they refused to believe me when I said it had been a really casual first date and I actually didn’t really feel like I was into the guy and didn’t plan to see him again.

    I really liked these people and had worked with them for years and years and oh my gosh, this was just excruciating for me. Like, I really thought about quitting my job for a second; I was that mortified. I ghosted the guy; he very quickly married and divorced the next woman he met (we’re still casual/FB friends). And it only took a week or so of telling the nosy coworkers that it wasn’t going to work out for them to get the hint and knock it off.

    Anyway, the whole point of sharing all this is for you to know that, at least in my experience, navigating dating stuff and work can be fraught with all kinds of anxiety and awkwardness. Please, please try to be kind with yourself. I don’t think you did anything wrong.

    Also, if you have a good relationship with your coworkers, I expect they would hate to know that you felt so ashamed about this. So if you feel like they’re continuing to bug you and it’s making you feel embarrassed, I think it would be 100% fine to ask one of your closer coworkers/friends to help shut it down. They might be thinking it’s all in good fun (because it might not be a big deal to them) but would never want to actually make you feel bad.

    Good luck.

  56. A New Level of Anon*

    As a single woman in my early 30s, I find it’s best not to discuss relationships that aren’t solid and long-term committed in the office. Heck, I’ve been in an exclusive relationship for the better part of a year before I mentioned it to my colleagues.

    Maybe it’s a bit paranoid, but I’m concerned about seeming flighty and immature and younger than I am because I’m not married or long-term partnered like most of my colleagues. I’m pretty solid work-wise, so I don’t want being romantically ineffectual to make people assume I’m less together. My relationship status is one of those things that detracts from my Responsible Reasoned Stable Adult Lady image that my professional success, and being assumed to be single-and-not-looking-because-I’m-married-to-the-job might be preferable to attracting any attention to my lack of partner.

  57. Close Bracket*

    OP, I bet a number of your single co-workers have been in the same position. Maybe they didn’t talk about their dates at work, but they have gotten really excited about somebody and had it fizzle after the first date.

  58. Tara*

    A little off topic, perhap, but I can’t get past: “The next day, once everyone saw I hadn’t been killed on the date”

    Real talk: this is how women live. In fear. Listen to us.

  59. Chelsea*

    I’ve read this letter a few times and I’m honestly not sure why the OP thinks she screwed up. Lots of tinder dates don’t work out, and your coworkers know that, and the whole letter is a little odd to be honest. I do feel bad for OP in that the guy ghosted her, though.

  60. Fiona The Baby Hippo*

    Hmmm I have to be another person to jump in and defend Tinder! I met my current BF on there last year, and he had actually met his last GF on the app as well. We’re about to celebrate a year together, and I’m going to a Tinder wedding next year. FWIW, I live in NYC (so i know dating norms can vary wildly) but I chose Tinder bc it was a huge pool of men and allowed me to feel in the driver’s seat. (and i tried them all!) I also slept with just about every guy I went on a date with that i felt some attraction to, if not on date 1 then definitely on date 2. Again, I know NYC dating isn’t exactly the norm, and I certainly did it because I was interested in the guys and not bc I felt coerced, etc, but I really found that whether or not we slept together had little influence on whether or not we worked out longterm. Some guys I was really into, and they weren’t into me, sometimes visa-versa. Sometimes a guy and I would just mutually drift bc we were busy and not into it.

    My own personal advice, based on first-hand experience, is just to act baffled and breezy, Like, “He seemed really into it and then disappeared! Im as baffled as you are!” and if they press for details say, “I dont know, it was just a really normal first date! guess its one of the pitfalls of online dating.” You can even say “Its happened to friends of mine as well!” and pretend like Im one of your old buddies.

    But if he is acting this way after date 1, it was never meant to be in the first place, and you’re well shed of him. Onward and upward and best of luck!

    1. Not The LW*

      Thank you for this. I’m not the LW but I’m recently single again after being married over 10 years, and I’m online dating, and it’s hard not to feel like there must be something wrong with you when nothing ever seems to work out, and you add in sleeping with people pretty quickly … I like to think of myself as a sex-positive person but apparently I have internalized a lot of shame over possibly being perceived as a “slut.” I really need to work on that, because I would never judge another woman that way, but I have definitely been judging myself.

  61. LurkieLoo*

    I’d spin it as “I thought it went great, but he must not have because he’s basically ghosted me. Eh. Other fish in the sea.” I can totally see why you’re embarrassed, but don’t be. You probably wouldn’t have gushed so much in the first place if you hadn’t been trying to explain to a fellow co-worker.

    I remember my online dating days well. I can not even tell you how many times I felt like things went great and my date just ghosted or declined more dates. I think that’s a HUGE part of online dating in general. The one date and ghost is pretty common. As is the post first date glow. ;)

  62. TechWorker*

    As well as the fact you did nothing wrong & nothing to be ashamed of, from your coworkers perspective, this was absolutely the most likely outcome.. like not to be negative but the chance of you clicking with every single person you go on a first date with is about zero! I have plenty of colleagues who sometimes talk about dating at work and believe me ‘oh yea, didn’t work out’ or ‘it’s just fizzled’ is a more common outcome than ‘I found the love of my life’ – anyone who’s ever been on a blind date would get that.

  63. anon for this*

    Here’s a script for you: “I’ve decided to keep him in my Tinder harem but he just didn’t wow me enough to want to date him exclusively.”

    (I promise once you use the word “harem” to describe the group of guys you find on Tinder, people will stop asking relationship-ey questions. They will look at you in awe, respect, and/or fear, because you are the one in control of your dating experience instead of the other way around. People are used to women not being in control of dating and trying to get outside validation for their dating choices.)

    OP, from what you’ve written, this guy sounds like a dud and you don’t need a dud. So what if you slept with him on the first date? That’s no excuse for his poor behavior. If he doesn’t want to date you he can tell you that, but it sounds like what he’s doing is sending you enough of an answer so that he can keep you on the backburner in case he gets bored. He does not get to do that! Go find yourself other men and go out on all the dates you want. There are always more dudes to meet.

    PS. keeping a spreadsheet is a great way to keep track of your harem.

    1. Courageous cat*

      I have never heard of the word harem in this context, so I am not sure if you can promise that! Fair perspective though

      1. anon for this*

        I have a bumble harem and I’ve talked about it at work, not like bringing it up all the time but if the topic of “who are you dating” comes up. people usually giggle and then start asking you about “your harem” instead of individual guys. It’s great!!

  64. Bowserkitty*

    Oh OP, I’m probably piling on here but you absolutely have nothing to be ashamed over! I thought this was going to take a different turn honestly, that you ended up telling your office you one-nighted it with something! But you didn’t even tell them that so you’re fine. Just tell them it wasn’t a match after all and you’re moving on :)

    (For what it’s worth, after I was laid off from a job I went out to lunch with my former admin assistant group (we were all assistants to AVPs and higher) I showed them a potential Tinder date of mine and they pointed out a ton of red flags (he wanted me to come over to his house instead of a public restaurant) and convinced me to avoid it. I was young and happy I listened!!)

  65. Courageous cat*

    This is a strangely strong reaction. Nothing about this is highly unusual or weird, certainly not naive or reckless, and you don’t need to repeatedly defend yourself – you’re allowed to sleep with people on the first date. I would try to take a step back, maybe read a few dating blogs, and gain a little perspective because (hopefully reassuringly) none of this is worth even 30 seconds more of thought over!

  66. chickaletta*

    Welcome to the world of online dating! I agree with the others that your experience isn’t out of the ordinary. I’ve been rejected, I’ve rejected people, it happens. A lot of online dates are one date only. The good news is that the more people you go out with the easier it gets. The bad news is that it can also be exhausting.
    Your coworkers don’t expect you to get serious after one date! And if they do, it’s a sign to dial back how much you share with them (hello mom and dad).
    Totally agree that you should feel free to tell only what you want to tell and make up lines if needed. I talk about my date life to only a couple of my coworkers (I leave the office gossips off that list), and I share only what I’m comfortable sharing. For example, right now I’m not active on any online date sites because I’m rethinking what I want out of relationships, I’m tired of dating, and there’s a smidge of insecurity I’m currently going through. But what I tell my coworkers is that I’m too busy with other things to date and then I talk about the landscaping project I’m working on. It kills the questions about my love life almost instantly.

  67. Been There, Done That*

    Back in the day there was a saying “Before you find the handsome prince, you have to kiss a lot of frogs.” If one of our group was enthusiastic about a first date but it didn’t go anywhere after that, they only had to say “He/she was a frog” with a grin, because we all knew what it meant and enuff said. My short-version reply: “Ribbit.”

  68. Jenny Hamilton*

    Aw, OP, I want to hug you. You didn’t do anything wrong! The feelings you’re feeling are real and crappy, but I promise you that nobody in your office is going to think ill of you because a date didn’t work out. Dates not working out is what almost always happens! I hate that this is making you feel so bad about yourself — I hope the comments here can reassure you that it’s a case of your brain being mean to you. Hang in there!

  69. dumblewald*

    I want to 123rd everyone else’s sentiment that you have absolutely nothing to be ashamed of. I’m assuming here, but it seems like you’ve been raised to believe that “putting out” on a date is wrong or makes you a bad person – but it doesn’t! I understand you’re disappointed it didn’t work out, but I promise that a million other girls have hooked up with guys and it didnt go anywhere.

    I also don’t think you did anything wrong at work. If you’re not comfortable talking about your dating life any more, just dial it back – people will eventually get bored and forget. I personally don’t discuss my dating life at work for this reason…if things get too stressful, I won’t feel pressured to share at work.

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