Dating Excuses Men Give … Are They Legit? A Man’s Perspective.


So someone’s cancelled on you the last minute, or, they just can’t be in a relationship right now because they aren’t ready, or, they couldn’t respond to your text for 5 days because something happened … blah blah blah. Dating excuses happen, some are good, some are bad and some are downright ridiculous, but, are they legit? Can you believe them? I mean some seem plausible, but, are all dating excuses created equal? How do you know if they’re being honest or if they just got a better offer? Well, unless you’re pyschic, you don’t know, but I asked a guy friend of mine who does do a lot of dating (and excusing) what he says and what he means … here’s what he said about dating excuses.

Dating Excuses Men Give

When you can be pretty sure the bailout isn’t on the up-and-up

dating-excusesSnap, there goes the date.

Could be minutes before, hours prior, could be a few days before, but the date you were looking forward to is toast.

Cancelled via text. #Ouch.

Now you are left pondering: Was that a legitimate excuse or was I just snowballed?

Men are rich with dating excuses – some are actually legit too – but too many times you suspect it’s a lie, a ruse, a fabrication.

With that in mind, here are five of the ‘greatest’ (and well-used) dating excuses that will get you suspecting.

1. “Sorry to cancel. Work is just really busy. Crazy busy!”
Unless your name is Bill Gates, work just IS NOT that ingrained in your life. Most of us slog through the 9-5 cycle and actually shy away from “really busy” work assignments. Hearing this line? Be highly skeptical people.

2. “Was on way to meet you and car broke down. Have to cancel!”
If this was legit, my mechanic would be as rich as Bill Gates. It’s as well-used as my corkscrew. If you’re feeling particularly snooty, ask buddy to snap a photo off his phone of the damage and text it along (since he’s so adept at texting, cough).

dating-excuses3. “Have to postpone. Family emergency!”
Ah yes, the good-old family emergency. The fact that there are zero specifics, e.g.: “Grandma got run over by a reindeer,” makes this a potentially infallible lie. It’s also hard to call him out on this, cause if it’s true you’ll be drenched in embarrassment.

4. “Coming down with the flu. Have to cancel.”
Another time-honoured gem. Actually knew a guy who would stuff Kleenex up his nose and go the extra distance with a PHONE CALL! Just hearing that congestion in his voice was brilliant deception. Feeling snooty (part II)? Offer to drop off some soup to his apartment and then check the wastebasket for discarded tissues.

5. “Can’t do it this week. Vacation. Leave tomorrow for [insert location].”
Offer to drive him to the airport. If you’re lucky enough to corner him in this potential lie, he’ll likely trot out that, good God(!), there’s a FAMILY EMERGENCY as well.

So there you have it. Have you heard any of these dating excuses men give? I know I have, but I will admit I’ve also given some of the same ones too. The reality of dating is that people come and go, and, sometimes better offers do come along, or, you change your mind, or, well, you just aren’t interested anymore. Excuses are our way of letting them off easy, or so we think. I’ve learned that honesty IS the best policy so why not just be honest? I’ve made it a habit just to be honest about not wanting to go on the date anymore.

Sometimes, I really am busy and something really does come up but how do you know the difference? Well, you know because they reschedule right away. What do I mean? Well, something came up and they can’t make it tonight but they are free the next day and make plans to meet up with you. It’s as simple as that. I’ve rescheduled dates because of things that have come up and have followed through. That’s how you know if the dating excuse is not just an excuse, that’s how you know it’s legit. Plain. Simple.

READERS: Have you heard any of these dating excuses or given them? Has the person rescheduled? If you’ve given dating excuses why didn’t you just be honest with the person that you weren’t interested anymore? I’d love to hear about it in the comments below!

Your Sister in Dating Bliss,

Single Dating Diva

Copyright Single Dating Diva


  1. All of those have the same sub-text, i.e. something or someone better came up. If it’s a first date, then giving them the benefit of the doubt is okay because they don’t know anything about you and what you’re worth. If those lines are used after a second date, then that person is saying that you’re not that important to them. It’s highly disrespectful. Move on. Simples.


  2. Honestly, number one is a real one more often then not. We cannot always just leave work because we want to or it is the normal time to punch out. If the boss wants us there then it is wise for us to stay. We are judged by how we preform and how much time we are willing to give our jobs. The guy who sacrifices and stays late may stand a better chance of weathering storms and getting promotions.
    I think most of us use these excuses because they are convenient and sometimes we just don’t want to tell the person outright that we find them undesirable. It avoids long and drawn out discussions and is more tactful even though it is a fib.
    I do think that the other person deserves an honest answer though!


  3. Too busy is always an excuse not a reason. If someone wants to see you, they will.

    I tell women I’m not interested. No excuses.


  4. So- I am going to suggest that you balance these with the guy. And, I would tell any guy to do the same with a woman. Except #2. We all have access to Uber for the most part. Good transportation is just not an excuse. And for a first date, as long as someone gives you a reasonable excuse, and does so in a timely manner, I would say cut almost anyone a break. Things happen. Work just may be crazy busy It has happened to me, and that excuse has been used on me. What usually made the decision for me to accept the excuse and reschedule a date was when and how they told me- and that they apologized for having to do it. If it was a phone call 3 days before- sure, no problem. That’s considerate. If it was two hours before or a “I need you to call in an hour,” then heck no. At that point, I usually say- “Look, I’m a busy guy. Since you are canceling or postponing, I’m going to assume you aren’t interested. If you are, though, then call me. Don’t text, but call me. I’d be glad to consider another date. Otherwise, best wishes.” Then I wait and say nothing. Some people backpedal, some don’t. Sometimes there is a family emergency, and sometimes people get sick. Know this- when you cancel, man or woman, the onus is 100% on you to reschedule. Women, in particular- these days don’t say “raincheck’ to a guy and expect him to call again. Chivalry isn’t dead, but if you like the guy you are going to do the asking. In a town like DC where available women strongly outnumber available men, he won’t. He’ll move on because he can. You just have to use your best judgement. Simply put, the best antidote to ever having this be a problem is- for the first few months- be willing to confront these things. Not rudely, politely, but call people on it. I have always found they either respect your honesty and directness, or they don’t like it, in which case you don’t want to date them anyway.


  5. This is a great post. In my opinion, a man will make time for what he wants and who he wants. I understand a cancel here and there., but if this is often then more than likely he’s not interested.


  6. Yep… guys can be flakes (and girls too). Bottom line, if they’re REALLY interested, they’ll make it happen. Drop it like it’s hot and move on. If he’s really interested he’ll see you have more to do with your time than wait around, and that he’ll have to make something definitive happen if he’s really that into you. Don’t bend over backwards for this guy. EVER.


  7. The busy at work excuse has been too frequent in my dating life. If he doesn’t want to spend time with me, I’d prefer someone just being honest and we can both move on. If I get a sense a guy isn’t being upfront or honest with me, I ask him about it and move on if necessary.


  8. If one of those things actually did happen to me so I had to cancel a date (my workdays actually do go from 9 to 17 hours sometimes because of equipment failures), I’d make sure to give details and schedule a new date in the same phone call. I think if there’s no attempt at a rescheduling of the date immediately, then the excuse is bogus and you should move on.


  9. Women in their 20s often have a vastly overrated sense of their value and think that male 8’s are in their league when the women are only 6’s or 7’s.

    You also have more young men that do want to play the field for a while. Most don’t have much success and learn they need a relationship if they want to have sex with someone they find more attractive than the women 2 pts lower that they might be able to have casual with. Most men are failures at pick-up. One PUA coach said that only 1/10 guys succeed at really learning the stuff. Women tend to focus on the most successful guys and then think all guys are like them and thus think that men can totally get sex whenever they want–not the reality for most men.

    Here’s an article about high-achieving young women (admittedly most women aren’t so ambitious) putting of relationships because they value all of these other things more:

    Men who date women for 5 years and don’t want to marry or cohabit for a long time basically don’t like/love the women they’re with enough. They’re just complacently settling for whom they can easily get for now. It really is the settle for the 5 now until I get a bit older and have gotten more career under my belt and more confident and then go out and find a 6 that he’d actually be happy to marry.

    All that the timing wasn’t right and so on is mostly BS. They just weren’t that into her.

    That’s the hardest lesson for women to learn, that they can get sex with men that don’t love them that much, that aren’t into them, that will even stick around for a steady supply of sex and companionship for a couple years, but these men don’t love them deeply and sure as hell never intend on marrying them (though complacently sliding into marriage or kids does often happen).

    Basically it’s quite hard to find a man who’s really into a woman and that the woman is really into. I think probably half of women are fairly hypergamous (meaning they only feel strong attraction and romantic love if they guy is of somewhat higher value or better) and these women are going to struggle because their minimum threshold is too high. The other half that aren’t hypergamous (or very much) can feel excited and deeply in love with an equal in some sense (or in rare cases a lesser man) and they are the ones that are more likely to find a really happy and loving marriage.


  10. I have used the “family emergency” excuse about once or twice and works out well. I am not being flaky, there are just times when you really don’t think that the person is relationship material and just don’t have the heart to hurt his/her feeling. Or am I just being a coward (I know what you are thinking!). Great post! – Ritter


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