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I've noticed through conversations that some people develope shallow reasons, based on past relationship failures, to not date others. Does your past negative experiences cause you to immediately dismiss someone due to their name, profession, ethnicity, hobbies, music choices ect?

Kojaksmom 8 June 18
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If my dog doesn't like them, I don't like them.

Dogs are always a good guage. And people’s reaction to a dog, or children for that matter. I think Twain had some wiseacre comment about that.

@Gonzogopher Exactly. Came across a nice-seeming guy and early in texting, I was going to sign off to tend to my pup. He said no, don’t. I’m jealous of your dog. I responded: effing seriously?!?! He tried to pass it off as ‘kidding’ but it was too late.

@CarolinaGirl60 dodged one on that. My dog is lazy and old but a wise judge of character.

Any man who hates children and small dogs can't be all bad.


Barry Manilow is a dealbreaker. I prefer your first name not be the same as my ex wife but if need be I’ll give you a nick name. I have no intentions of ever getting married again... I don’t see any benifit in the institution for men. Barry Manilow is not a shallow reason🙂lol

Hahaha. Marriage is ONLY beneficial to men in my experience. They get love&affection, a personal secretary, housekeeper and usually, accountant out of the deal, all women seem to get is more work.

@Blindbird We have had very different experiences 🙂

I agree 100% about Barry Manifold!

@Blindbird Are you really as blind as you appear?

@ezwryder. What do you mean?

I'm with you on that one. Barry is a complete deal breaker...

@Blindbird I mean that some learn little from their relationships, and others learn a lot.

@ezwryder That's really rude. It gives me enought reason to dismiss you.


All human beings naturally have biases and sometimes faulty judgement based on their past experiences and individual personality and needs. Some people have a well-defined idea and list of criteria for who they want to connect with, and others may be more open and tolerant of some things they don't like in a potential partner. We all have some deal breaker things like not wanting a drug addict, or smoker, or pompous ass, or chronic liar, or someone with two heads.

Well stated!


I don't know if you are going to get a lot of good answers here, but I think this is a good thing for us to reflect on, and challenge certain assumptions we make about people.


Only music choices. 😉

daylily Level 8 June 18, 2018

@Kojaksmom nope for me it's the slightest whiff of narcissistic traits, been there not going again. Not sure about music choices being a shallow reason I once had a date with a guy who walked into my home turned off my music and put on some 'banging tunes' that gave me a headache... rude and uncomfortable

It wasn’t the music, it was the disrespect! Goes right back to narcissistic. Selfish, thoughtless, disrespectful jerks might not technically be narcs, but close enough for me to avoid them.


Nooo.... I am an equally opportunity... Never mind, it doesn't matter what I say, does it?

IamNobody Level 8 June 18, 2018

Of course they do. As illogical as it sounds, if you've had your heart stomped on by a redhead, for example, then you might be reticent to date another redhead - even one who's nothing like the first one.

Jthurston2 Level 6 June 18, 2018

I would say the same, but instead of ‘redhead’, insert: ‘narcissist/sociopath’. Yes, I’m going to avoid any red flags for THAT!

@CarolinaGirl60 Yes, redhead was meant as an example. It could be anything.


For example, if I went on a dating site and exchanged messages, then I called a gentleman's phone number, there are certain buzzwords that I can hear in an initial phone conversation that are off-putting to me. I would typically ask the gentleman "What is your present situation right now?" He might reply he lives in a stripped down one bedroom apartment in a bad section of town and he needs someone to share bills 50/50. He is homeless and he wants to come to my house, or he does have a house but he lost his job and consequently three of the the bedrooms are rented and he set the money to pay bills, so there is a house but there are lodgers bunking in. The gentleman lives in a three bedroom apartment with two roommates. The genlteman lives with his elderly mother and the house is really hers, but he cannot leave her because her disability benefit isn't enough for her to pay her bills. His pregnant adult daughter returned home, in the future he will be playing daddy to his bastard grandson. The gentleman drives uber, he lives in a weekly hotel, he has an ex wife that he is still simping for. The gentleman is in the process of putting his young adult children through college. The gentleman mentions that his sister is the executor of his will and he has two nieces he is close to. The gentleman's cheerleading teen daughter and child prodigy pianist son live with him, his wife is dead. Someone else is living an enriching life with fully financed gymnastics, jazz dance, ballet, yoga, sculpture, pilates, painting classes and piano lessons while I am proposed to hump, pump, pay bills, cook meals and clean the kitchen. Someone else gets a large, private room with a large closet while I get nothing more than eighteen inches on the left side of the wardrobe and half of a queen sized mattress. I worry that my primary role is to to do the horizontal mambo, I will arrive bringing both p*$$y and money, there is literally nothing in this situation for me, someone else is riding a financial gravy train. My social status in the household is zero, I would be a low priority on the priority list behind four other people. There is some triangulated jealousy because I am only proposed to be starfished out on the bed agitating like a washing machine drum and no one is paying $60,000 a year for me to get my MBA at Wharton school. I would potentially not be the lady of the house, someone else is accruing equity in the real estate every time I chip in. My role is to put money not a shared pot while someone else eagerly siphons resources from that pot. Overnight I am expected wail with a crescendo of exaggerated moans like the sound track of a porn film but by day I will pay bills and clean the house. His ex wife who won't ever touch him gain still jointly has her name on the property deed to the home. Other people are better socially and financially positioned than I am. The man has a pathological relationship with his sister who calls him and hits him up for money to pay her medical bills. His sister has no husband to pay her bills but if I were to marry her brother then he is still the designated person to that she as an married women needs to call to pay her bills. Meanwhile the $400 I kick in for food is a shared resource enjoyed by many disrespectful teens who eat but don't kick in. On the day he dies, his adult daughter will arrive to the home to ask me how soon I can be out. His adult son is the beneficiary on the life insurance. I have to change the shitty diapers for a baby thats not mine so someone else who made a bad decision can complete school. He is in a polygamous marriage to his existing first wife, but she has retired from sex forever, and thats where I come in to the picture. She still lives in his house and eats his food, and I do 100% of the "scut work" she didn't want to do. She brings no continuing value to the equation, yet I get nothing more than the same share she gets, 50/50 division of resources. I provide the $1200 overnight ultra porn package deluxe 28 days of every month, offering $36,000 worth of adult services on a barter swap for a room valued at $600/ month. I add value and other people extract benefits.There is a social hierarchy and I am nobody, no where in the social order. If I want to, I can hump and pump my way down the path to no where, but I cannot find a way to benefit myself, not in any way. There is nothing in this situation for me from day one and I am helpless to change this.

Laurely4u Level 4 June 23, 2018

Wow. You pulled that right out of my head! Bravo?.
There are way too many of the men/situations you so aptly described, and not a damn one of them has any shame.

Wow, I can't believe how boring I am!


I have a couple. I will not date someone who is highly religious or conservative - that just won't work. I also will never date a smoker...

jjhagen Level 6 June 18, 2018

Me? Discriminatory? I wouldn't be surprised! But is it reasonable and justifiable?

mkeaman Level 6 June 18, 2018

Well, I dismiss people who seem like narcissists or psychopaths and anyone with an addiction because of bad experiences in the past. I also don't get together with cruel people who have no compassion for animals or people. I don't think that's too extreme!

Arielle Level 4 June 18, 2018

No that's reasonable. the other day I was talking to a lady who refused to date a man whose name was John. Lol! I can understand her reasoning however irrational it is

@Kojaksmom I developed an aversion to college sweatshirts due to a past partner’s wardrobe. ?

@Kojaksmom Think of the problem that Richard has.


Even though my past experiences included good as well as bad they also sent messages of what to watch for. My last experience was nothing but good and told me things can work out very well. Let's see, she was from Iran, an elementary school teacher, loved Middle-East music, had hobbies that were different than mine, spoke a different language etc. Everything only increased my knowledge and experience base. That said I could never be with a hard-core conservative or hard-core liberal.

JackPedigo Level 9 June 18, 2018

Every time we “write someone off” we also write ourselves off that person’s life. It works in both directions. In a way it’a perfectly resonanble and natural state of affairs: monogamous coupling requires that all but one be deemed insufficient. But it can become a habit.

In my case, my ex decided that our relationship was over. I wanted to keep the marriage.
We had three kids. But I was getting nowhere. After one year I filed for divorce. We were divorced two years ago. I’ve dated since that time, and I started two relationships that I thought were going somewhere. Those relationships have ended, however. We ended on good terms, but there is no willingness to talk about anything else. It’s as if we were “dead to each other,” but better, because we’re not dead.

I communicate with my ex about the kids. There appears to be a mutual willingness to carry on a conversation. And it’s difficult to replicate the 20 years of good and bad history that we accumulated together. This perspective-this time together-helps us put off the unsettling feelings that we get when our partner goes on “brooding mode.” Brooding mode, the mindset that helps us keep an accurate and firmament-filling account of our partner’s failings, is a common human condition. It’s capsulated in the saying “familiarity breeds contempt.”

I guess what I’m trying to say is that it would seem that relationships, like everything else in this universe, have certain duration, a “lifespan.” It’s easy to start them, and it’s easy to finish them. The longer-lived ones are sustained by everyday, commonplace things that are mutually interesting. And by letting bygones be bygones.

ArturoS Level 6 June 18, 2018

Arturo, your thoughts are interesting and telling. You deserve credit for gaining a lot of insight and knowledge from the experience of your marriage, and relationships since and it will serve you well in establishing your next relationship. I admire your thinking.

I really enjoyed reading your answer - insightful and accurate. Thank you!

I still see my ex at least every other month. The kids like to do family celebrations at holidays and birthdays, and now there are lots more of them. We are always amicable, we can carry on civil conversations; its like we know where NOT to go. But our relationship also taught me things to look for. I was pretty stupid at 24, it took me a while to realize how condescending he was. It took me a long time to realize I did not come first, or second, and we could debate third. But, live and learn, and we're wiser for the pain.


Hobbies and music choices maybe. Names not so much. I grew up a Smith, I love unusual names. Profession, maybe. I probably wouldn't have much in common with someone who works for ICE right now. Ethnicity is not an issue. Race is a human construct and we all bleed red blood.

Doesnt it depend on whether it is arterial or veinous blood which may explain why royalty is known as "blue blood"?

@FrayedBear I am very pale skinned and I have tons of blue showing through my skin. Yes, a true working class blue blood. I've also got some amazing blue bruises today but that is another story.



FrayedBear Level 9 June 18, 2018

Yes. It's hard enough to meet new people why add in the difficulty of negative association with their name because of prior unpleasant experiences.

Anewpath Level 2 July 8, 2018

My ex and I were both very independent people. She had a lot of good qualities, but intimacy was not one of them. She wasn’t much of a cuddler or hand holder... we didn’t really do any “cute” things together. Which at the time, I didn’t think that stuff was important and didn’t really care in the beginning. But after 6 years together it got pretty lonely. Turns out it is important to me after all. And I think we were a bit too independent. I’d like to find someone as more of a partner instead of someone who we just each do our own thing and see each other when we see them.


I would hope not

weeman Level 7 July 19, 2018

Name? Check... would never date someone with the same name as two of my ex-significant others. Profession? Check... some things are just not going to fly with me... like a minister or a professional liar (many fall into that category). Ethnicity? Never been a problem. The recreational stuff you follow with? I have definitely disqualified people because we just didn't have any interests in common. Given all that, I don't see any of that as shallow. All of those things are attributes of WHO a person IS. And the name thing... that isn't shallow. Just a remnant of past trauma and painful associations that would unfortunately color way too many aspects of life.

Seeker3CO Level 8 July 15, 2018

I have been in love several times dated many females it seems like I'm a lot more trigger happy than when i was a younger guy. I'm just not up for games anymore and feel clchei saying that but i don't feel very handsome although I'm one hell of an experienced man who has crawled into his feet.

Holymoly Level 4 June 23, 2018

I experienced the opposite side of this, someone online (on a dating site) was chatting with me for a few days, it was going very well for both of us, then it came out that I'm a corrections officer. She instantly said she couldn't see me, as mine is one on a list (her words) of careers that she doesn't date.

I had never encountered the notion of not dating someone based on their career before. I mean, I can see "drug mule", then you don't date that person based on the career. "Serial killer", "meth lab operator", those as well. "Uber cab driver" would be borderline. But any legitimate career, you earn money, what's the beef with the career?

Paul4747 Level 8 June 21, 2018

On the other hand, I do have an instant aversion to people with big face piercings or huge earlobe holes, big face tattoos, or hair that is a color not found in nature. And gangster rap puts me off.

The only corrections officer I talked to from a dating site, was a total freak. Not in a good way! Very polite until the texting, then it was scat, S and M, unsolicited dick pics...violent and disturbing, real fast. Once I blocked him(ALSO real fast!), he kept making new profiles and claiming to be a construction worker, salesman, and a kindergarten teacher: but same profile and pic. So who knows, what he really was, other than scary?
Men like him are out there, giving ya’ll a bad rep.

@CarolinaGirl60 Odds are, in that case, he wasn't an officer either. Just drawing reputable-seeming occupations out of a hat.
I assure you, I'm a freak in a totally good way. 😉 And very polite too. (Plus a sense of humor, which, if it didn't come across there, that was it.)

@Paul4747 Have you ever considered a job that requires restraining, imprisoning, controlling and regimenting others, could be quite a big turn-off for a potential partner? It certainly would be for me.

@Arielle Okay, on that list, we don't imprison people. That's the courts. We keep order inside the prison environment. Hopefully nobody you know, or even were acquainted with, has run foul of the legal system... but if they have, they need someone who is committed to being fair, being humane, and stopping the violent offenders from preying on the old, the young, the mentally ill, and even one another. They need someone like me running the block. We don't have rules and regulations for our enjoyment, but for safety.
I'm a little bit passionate about the subject only because it's important to me and so many horrible stereotypes are out there. Not because it's my whole life. If they ever bring the pension plan back, I'm out of there.

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