Dating 101

Five men you think you want to date (but actually really, really don’t)

Mr Neat And Tidy
Who is he? He’s never got a hair out of place and his flat is a monument to order and hygiene.

Why you think you want him: A man who cleans up after himself is the rarest of beasts; to find one is surely the holy grail of dating. Imagine all those gleaming surfaces you can have sex on!

Why you really don’t want him: If he’s that fastidious about himself and his environs, think how much control he’ll exert over you and yours. He’ll sneer at your ‘floordrobe’ and nag you about washing the dishes. While Mr Neat might look like the full package, in actual fact he’s a Cillit Bang-wielding housekeeping fascist who thinks it really is about time you did your laundry and oh my goodness is that a pizza box in your bed – what the hell is wrong with you?

Mr Puts You First
Who is he? Whatever you say goes. This eager to please puppy dog caters to your every whim, just to make you happy. If you don’t want to do it, neither does he.

Why you think you want him: Well, you get to do exactly as you please 24/7, and have your very own cheerleader at your side, making you feel special. This is all about you. All. For. You.

Why you really don’t want him: Doormattery is never sexy. It just isn’t. A guy who makes everything about you is heading for a fall in a big way. First of all, acquiescing to you day in, day out is bound to be a breeding ground for resentment when he realises he hasn’t done anything for himself in the last year. Also, when you start to tire of all this adoring emotional serfdom, your eyes are going to start dancing their way across the bar to rest upon the nearest hot nonchalant person who barely knows you’re alive.

Mr Best Dressed
Who is he? Clothes maketh the man, and this stylish trendgasm has it all going on, from his perfectly buffed boots to his expertly coiffed head.

Why you think you want him: He looks so good. People stare. He’s with you! Phwoar.

Why you really don’t want him: The problem with carrying a huge man-sized shiny bauble around with you is that it attracts attention. The wrong kind, from other men in search of decoration. Also, anyone who places such a huge importance on clothes is probably going to make you spend many an agonising hour shopping in some dreadful mall, stopping off for a glass of flat champagne at a soulless bar of cheap laminate and gold spray paint. He’ll also want to go out to show these clothes off. He’s not going to want to sit in front of reality TV on a Wednesday night when he’s got all these ‘threads’ to show off, is he?

Mr Mummy Likes Him
Who is he? You know as soon as you meet him that you can take him home to your mum. And when you do, he gets it right first time, with flowers, charm, and an ability to make one tepid cup of tea last an hour or two.

Why you think you want him: You’ve never been able to introduce a date to your mother before, given you spent the entire relationship drunk, covering for their kleptomania, or ashamed because they had a chest tattoo of an Amy Winehouse lyric.

Why you really don’t want him: The last thing you need for your fragile ego is a new ally for your family. As they pore conspiratorially over baby photos, your mother delighting in regaling your date with tales of you shitting yourself at nursery and the time she stumbled upon your internet history and it was full of amateur porn, they’re forming a dynamic duo whose only purpose is to make fun of you. Affectionately, of course. Right. And so it goes on, until your mother prefers him to you and then – when you inevitably break up with the toadying, Oedipal creep – she’ll mention him every time you turn up to a family event with your next, inappropriate squeeze.

Mr Popular
Who is he? He’s got oodles of friends and everybody knows his name. Going out with him is like being with a lesser celebrity, but without cameras following you round.

Why you think you want him: Congratulations, you’re a localised Kardashian! You’re suddenly part of a social whirl previously unavailable to you, with more connections than a train timetable and party invites than a publicist.

Why you really don’t want him: Popular guys are like cheap margarine: they don’t work so well when they’re spread too thinly. He’s got lots of friends, yes, but on the peripheries are hangers-on, and with a guy getting so much attention from his inner circle, is he going to have time for everybody? To make sure you get facetime with Mr Popular is going to take a lot of effort. Do you have it in you to be at his side come hell or high-water, at every shindig he attends, pretending you’re gripped by the small talk being foisted upon you by his simpering acolytes? Will he be having such a good time in the middle of it all that you slide out of view? Your taxi, as ever, is outside. He’ll catch you later, babes, yeah?

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