Date Etiquette: What Every Man Wants to Hear post image

Date Etiquette: What Every Man Wants to Hear

Attention all girls/ladies/women/anyone with girly parts that’s ever been taken out by a guy with….guy parts: repeat after me – “Thank you.”

These two words, if not used on a date or shortly after, can and even should be a deal breaker for the guy who is taking you out.  It has been known since times of the ancient Egyptians (all historical references will be fictional) that a man’s job is to pay.  We get that.  Thousands of years of tradition, lectures from mom and dad, unsolicited dating advice from friends have been heard.  All of us normal members of the male species have read and checked the box for the terms of agreement.  Now it is your turn.

I took a girl out last week. Reserved a town car, went uptown for sushi, went shopping at Bloomingdales  (cue the dressing room montage) and ended it with a romantic, snow framed viewing of NYC at Top of the Rock before driving her to the airport.

Honestly, when someone holds the elevator doors for you, you say the words. When your co-worker offers to do work he was responsible for anyways, you say thank you.  When a cop issues you a speeding ticket the last words to come out of your mouth are not “Screw you!”  They’re “Thank you kindly officer and you have a wonderful day and I wish your kids all the best and stay warm out here because brrrrr!”

But last week she said one cumulative, “Thanks.”  Thanks?!  Thanks.  $300 later, 45 miles of driving, and shopping and I got a thanks at the Delta terminal.

I am sorry to use the “hotness scale” in my explanation of events but it seems it is the best way to get my point across.  Before the date’s events, the aforementioned female was a solid 8.  An 8.5 in that first night’s dress.  After the revelation of her ungrateful nature she legitimately dropped to a 5.  Making your man feel appreciated is so vital that it will for sure bring down everything else about you, and overshadow your great qualities, if you can’t express a little gratitude and recognition for his efforts.

The opposite is true as well.  If you are a bit more curvaceous than your friends, or don’t have the facial symmetry of Bar Refaeli, there is little need to worry about finding a great looking, well mannered, mensch.  A bright, positive outlook on life, a sense of humor, and showing your date how thoughtful it was when he grabbed an extra mint for you on the way out of the Italian joint will bring that infamous number higher than you know.

MORE: 5 Ways to Be Irresistible to Men

A recent survey found that 87% of men want a “Thank you” text after a date.  I love this survey.  The question then becomes when do I send the text and what should it say?

Listen to me and listen good because I am about to rock your socks off! Send the text immediately after the date.  I am talking within minutes! He shouldn’t even have time to check the Knicks score of the game he missed while he was busy trying to be witty with you for the past two hours.  It should say something to the tune of: “I had a really nice time tonight.” Period. Stop. All done.  Cue guy smiling on his subway back home.

The contract is this.  We will pay.  We will be gentlemen.  Most of us will compliment your outfit, or your hair, or your shoes because we know you spent exponentially more time picking them out then we did whatever we have on.  You just have to show gratitude.

Lastly, while we’re on it. For the brave souls out there who really want to take it to the next level, how about a fake reach for the wallet/purse when the timing feels right?  We all know that any decent dude is not going to allow it so all the more so a reason for the gesture. You look like a generous, one-of-a-kind, diamond in the rough type of girl that doesn’t have a sense of entitlement and we get to look like heroes waving away your act of kindness as we hand the waiter the $6.95 for two lattes. Everyone leaves happy.

The beginning stages of dating are there to show your best self.  It is not a fake self.  It is your best self. 

I want to add one last piece about the concept of permanently acquiring the attribute of gratefulness.  First of all, how do you add a quality that doesn’t exist? Practice.  Do this every day and I promise you at least 50% happier days (All percentage references will be fictional): When you wake up the first thing you should do is use all five senses to appreciate the gift of a brand new day. Use whatever works for you: smell the first danishes coming fresh out of the oven from the bakery across the street; listen to the 6am sounds of the city stretching it’s legs; when you step outside, see the sprinkling rain that will bud beautiful, spring flowers; feel the warm coat you’re lucky to own during this harsh winter; taste your first sip of coffee on the way to the train giving you the energy to crush all of your goals at work.

When we say thank you for the everyday monotonies of life, then, when a potential boyfriend holds the door for you, you will be naturally astounded and have no choice but to shower him with the affection that he so desires and needs.

I came home that night, from the date, and told my friends about this attractive, fun, outgoing, spontaneous, conversational girl I just spent the past six hours with…and when I told them she did not show the trait of appreciation…it was a resounding no.

Keep your chin up.  If you say those two words (hint: thank you), the likelihood of us saying those three words (hint: I love you) someday are much, much greater.

How do you express gratitude on or after a date? Tell us in comments!


23 comments… add one

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To me it sounds like you were trying so hard that you have gotten her uncomfortable or even to the point she thought you’re creepy.

Reply January 14, 2020, 8:57 am


Agreed. I want to say you didn’t give good enough context for your side of the story, and then you go off and talk about how terrible of a person she is for not doing the ONE thing you wanted her to do. Why would you buy her a dress on the first date? Were you trying to marry her? Because that’s what it sounds like, and I would have thought you’d have known her for some time now. I would have been creeped out

Reply January 19, 2017, 5:52 am


I usually say thank you right after or as he pays. Even if I don’t want a second date, I’ll send a text saying thank you a day or two later. If I do want that 2nd date, my text will say thank you plus we should do that again sometime!

Only if a guy shows himself to be a complete tool, sort of a jerk, will he get no thank you email. Paying for my meal or drink doesn’t make up for treating me badly! No thanks for that!

Reply February 12, 2016, 1:18 pm


This must be American. I’ve never met a British man who would pay for the evening. I have always offered to split the bill, and the guy has always got his calculator out. We pay for alternate rounds at the bar and make sure things stay evenly balanced!
And I always say thank you as soon as I’m home to let them know my appreciation, even if the date was pants!

Reply August 10, 2015, 5:26 pm


Dear Noah….’Thankyou’ (she said bowing ever so slightly)….. Ok, enough about you. .. Let’s get to ‘me’…. my problem, I now realise from reading all this stuff, is that I have actually been doing all the right things without realising it and have never had a problem getting a guy to fall for me. …EXCEPT the one I really want!! I just can’t seem to act the sane way with him. .. It feels weird. .. and having had him in the friend zone for so long he’s gathering dust. . He would probably think I needed a swift lobotomy if I suddenly started acting towards him like I would other men. .. In fact it would be so embarrassing to me the lobotomy actually sounds easier… so I’m kinda stuck a how to go about turning him into my other romantic half. .. should I start off with more thankyous? He’ll probably suspect I’m after borrowing money. …x

Reply June 24, 2015, 3:47 pm


Saying thank you has not been a problem with me at all. I show gratitude at almost everything he does. From him opening doors, opening car doors, texting me hoping I have a great day, just about anything. I’ve noticed when I tell him what he did for me that I appreciated or even like, he makes more of an effort. I love the way he looks at me and affection. I can definitely tell by his actions that he enjoys making me happy and I love that. Sure we have our differences but most of them time we get each other.

Reply January 8, 2015, 9:04 pm


I always make it a habit to look a gentleman in the eyes and say thank you when he does something sweet for me. I guess I got kinda confused about texting. I thought there was a strict no texting first policy. I never thought to immediately send a thank you text. I suppose I get scared as coming across as desperate or clingy if I were to send a text. But, thanks for the advice. I don’t want to come across as unappreciative. Thanks for the advice! :)

Reply May 10, 2014, 7:04 pm

Noah Williams

Hey Nicole, thank you so much for the comment. Texting is definetly something to do carefully and with a lot of intention so kudos to you for taking it seriously. The texting i am referring to is just one after the date. Very quick. Very to the point. Just to show gratitude, A healthy guy will never think “this girl is too much for me” if you just say “i had a nice time” or “thanks again for dinner.” Its just a sweet thing to do.

Reply May 12, 2014, 6:37 pm


I always send a thank you text a day after a date (even if I said thank you after the date in person) though many condemn me for doing that. They say it shows too much interest but really I’m just bring polite

Reply May 3, 2014, 11:03 pm

Noah Williams

Diana, yes you are just being polite. Good for you to not listen to the crowds who are too insecure to show a little gratitude. Keep doing what youre doing. And thanks for the comment!

Reply May 12, 2014, 6:39 pm


This is so great, Noah. I love the way you treated this woman. She should have had stars in here eyes from the moment you picked her up. What you planned for was amazing, and I personally think a guy saying “will you let me buy you an amazing dress to show off your gorgeous body?” Is HOT. She should have been thanking you DURING the date, and often. Move along — she’s not a classy girl.

Reply April 25, 2014, 5:18 am

Noah Williams

Genevieve, thank you! I have moved on quite far! Thanks for the comment.

Reply May 12, 2014, 6:39 pm


While I agree being appreciative and thankful is important an necessary…..who takes someone shopping on a date? That’s weird and awkward. And really the type of person who would appreciate/take advantage of that isn’t really the type of person I envision practiced in the art of gratitude.

Reply April 19, 2014, 6:29 pm


Absolutely Agree

Reply April 21, 2014, 8:25 pm


This is very true, Ill give a couple of examples.

Example one: Last night a guy im totally in love with just dropped by my house to say hi, granted I was a little embarrassed because I looked awful and my house was a mess. He stayed and chatted for about 30-40 min and took off.

I sent him a text saying Luv’d that you dropped bye btw. He responded “you are sooo welcome, someones gotta check on you, glad you are feeling better”

I had totally forgotten that I told him about a procedure I had done. Hopefully my appreciation for his gesture will lead to more of this kind of sweetness from him.

example #2 I was talking to my ex who was heart broken about a girl he had just broken up with who was a total greedy, gold digging wench and right before we got off the phone he said “I met this girl the other night though, and I like her because she appreciates me” …its been a year since then and hes still with her and treats her like a queen, and shes always showing her appreciation on her facebook for everything he does for her and I think its so sweet. I think he will marry her :)

Appreciation goes a long way for a man.

Reply April 16, 2014, 5:18 pm


I don’t want to go off topic. But I am curious. When should a girl start showing appreciation on facebook? Is it right away, or when the relationship has become official. I’m a very private person and I see girls do this right away with guys and the guys seem to love it, but I tend to feel awkward. Just curious as to your thoughts.

Reply May 10, 2014, 7:08 pm


I have recently been out on two dates with this man I like. He’s a sweet heart and a gentleman. Mind you, I’m not used to having a door opened for me, as I can do that myself, but I let him. I have said thank you both times…not “thanks”. We had a great time both times, and before he even got out of my driveway, I sent him a “thank you I had a great time tonight”. I am not used to having as guy buy me a drink or pay for my meal…I guess that’s the independence side of me lol. I have mentioned they don’t have to do that, that I can pay for my own, but they pay anyway. It may also be that I’m a tomboy/country girl all the way. I don’t know if that would be a turn off or turn on to a guy..but its who I am and not changing, lol. Nevertheless, I ALWAYS say or text thank you I had a great time tonight.

Reply April 16, 2014, 1:14 pm


I’m just like this! I’m pretty independent and stubborn. haha It’s hard for me to let a guy pay for something…I don’t know if it’s a turn off or not either.
I’m always super appreciative. From my last relationship, I was willing to jump the moon for my ex and all I wanted in return was appreciation. I know how even that gives immense pleasure.

Reply March 26, 2015, 3:26 pm


I can 100% attest to the fact that any girl that I have dated in the past, who I felt did not fully appreciate what I did for her, I refused to see her again. When a guy spends so much time and effort on renting a car, spending a superfluous and outrageous amount of money on the date, spending time researching where to go etc..and receives a nonchalant “thank you” from the girl or no “thank you” at all (!!!!) then that girl does not deserve to be taken out by any man!-And therefore, in my opinion, is not marriage material. Marriage is supposed to be what I can do for someone I love and not what I can take from this person. It is because of these past experiences that made me appreciate my wife now. We both give to each other and truly appreciate the effort, time, and love that we both give to each other. So don’t worry Noah, when you do finally meet your soul mate, you will appreciate her even more because of what you are going through now. You have to feel that this girl/lady who will be your future wife will appreciate everything you do!! -even if you did something small I.e. Taking out the garbage or buying her a cup of all comes down to appreciation. Good luck! And don’t worry you seem like a fine young chivalrous man who deserves to be appreciated for the things that you do. Someday you will be appreciated.

Reply April 11, 2014, 1:23 pm


You are right on! A thank you is in order. Can’t believe that you didn’t receive one after such a display of generosity of your time and money! Her loss!

Reply April 10, 2014, 7:06 pm


Very interesting article. I don’t usually send thank-you texts after a date because I don’t want to come across as over-eager or desperate but maybe I’ll give it a try.

Reply April 10, 2014, 11:27 am


I think as long as it is short and sweet Kelly, that does not come off as over-eager/desperate.
When you start putting in feelings is when I think that is conveyed.

Reply March 26, 2015, 3:28 pm


Thank you so much for posting, I have been over analyzing everything! Men are much simpler than what I make them out to be. I will be showing more gratitude (:

Reply April 10, 2014, 10:43 am

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