Those who have met their Mr or Mrs Right might sit back and be glad they no longer have to worry about what the dating scene is like ‘these days’. For others, it might be a case of ‘been there, done that and have a story to prove it’.

Here, some of our readers share their best and worst dating experiences. Personally, I like to use the phrase ‘what’s meant for you won’t pass you by’.

Head over heels

My partner remembers the day he first saw me and most of our interactions between then and the day we kissed. To me, he was, ‘Max’s friend who always wears shorts’.

At Max’s birthday we were both on the flirt as much as the, ‘sesh’ and went outside for a little privacy. Obviously one thing led to another and I kissed him. But he came over all funny, and said, ‘let’s go back inside’. Ouch, my ego. But I stepped inside and he fainted. Everyone at the party had seen and rushed to his side. I abandoned him, scooped up my housemate and left the soirée.

My friends all decided that I was now Rogue from X-Men and that I sucked the life from him. I checked in on him the next day, he was fine. We arranged a date and we’ve been together ever since. I like to say he fell head over heels for me after our first kiss. He wishes I’d stop telling this story. And our friends still call me Rogue.

- Shamim de Brún

I’ll marry the chef that made it

I’m a chef and I ran a restaurant down in Duncannon in Co Wexford. Now, down in Duncannon there isn’t a massive amount of women to choose from, plus I worked pretty hard.

One night a family arrived into the restaurant for dinner. One of the women asked for the chocolate fondant which I happily made. On finishing the dessert, she remarked to one of the waiting staff, she would marry the chef who made it.

On hearing this I quickly cleaned the kitchen, showered and stuck on my best shirt and a sprinkle of Brut and made my way to Roches bar, which is beside the restaurant and here our first date began. We are married 10 years, going out 15, with two children... chocolate is the way to a woman’s heart.

- Aidan Kelly

Listen to your gut

My (now ex) boyfriend was going to a comedy show with some friends and said, ‘I wish you could be there.’ I managed to snag a babysitter and phoned him an hour later to let him know I could come. He said, ‘Oh, I didn’t really mean it, it’s just one of those things you say’ and said that I couldn’t come. I put up with that for five more years! Girls, listen to your gut and if things aren’t right, leave.

- Helen, Co Cork

Age thief

I met a guy once who pretended to be older. I was 40 at the time and went on a date with him. He had said he was 30 but it turned out he was actually 20 - I was mortified! I asked him if he has a, ‘Mrs Robsinson thing going on’ and he replied, ‘Who’s Mrs Robinson?’ I paid for his drink, told him to head off to Coppers and I left.

- Mrs Robinson in Athy

Time to go home

“About seven years ago I met a lad in a Dublin nightclub while out with the girls. We exchanged numbers and went on a date the following week to Rody Bolands, the local pub.When I arrived he was absolutely smothered with the flu, coughing and sneezing like there was no tomorrow.

I was very uncomfortable, to say the least – luckily the girls were nearby so I sent them an SOS. They came by and pretended to be there by chance. They sat with us for a few minutes and said they were heading to Copan (the late bar). I told the lad, ‘sure I will go with the girls, I know you’re not well, you may as well go home’. But oh no, he said he would join us. And he stayed, right until the bitter sweet end, coughing and sneezing the whole night long.

- Rita Nolan

Dealing with a broken heart

A year after I broke up with my long-term boyfriend, I thought it was time to get back into the dating game. I downloaded the apps and began swiping left and right to find a good match. I matched with this really cute guy and the conversation was flowing, so after a few days we agreed to meet up. We went to a lovely Ialian restaurant, he was very nice and the food was delicious. However, I didn’t feel very comfortable - something was off. The date ended and we parted ways with a friendly hug.

I immediately rang one of my friends to see if she was at home because I was stopping in to debrief. I was feeling very anxious and after discussing it, I could clearly see it had actually been a great date, I just wasn’t as ready as I thought I was for dating.

Nearly three years on and I couldn’t be happier, I’m even seeing someone new and things are going really well. Heartbreak affects everyone differently and it’s important to take the time that you need, but also not be afraid to dip your toe into the water, you’ll know when you’re ready.

- Time heals all wounds

Packed lunch

I met a guy and we went for a spin in the car and chatted. He kept talking about himself. He then proceeded to take out a packed lunch his mother made him on the date (it was in a lunch box). He began to eat it with coffee sticks (he said the shop he passed through didn’t have cutlery). I was mortified sitting there watching him. How did he even manage it?

We didn’t go for a coffee or a bite either. After the date I got my friend to drop me to the local chipper as I was starving! I never saw him again.

- Laura

Pass it on

I was dating this guy back in my 30s and things were going really well and had started to get serious.

Then he rang me one day and said I had given him chlamydia and needed to go get tested and treated. I was horrified.

But I went to my GP and got tested and turns out I didn’t have it – it was him, because he was still dating other women without telling me. I thought we were exclusive.

The satisfaction I had telling him we were finished and good luck with his chlamydia treatment.

- Lucky escape

Check your eggs

Well, it was the morning after a date with my now hubby (so I didn’t put him off). I was trying to impress with the full Irish breakfast, a good feed after the night out. When it was time to crack out the egg on the pan, a chicken appeared in it. I’ll never forget the look on his face – that’s the joys of having hens on the farm.

- Fizz

Picture no sound

There was a very good looking lad where I worked, and he finally asked me on out on a date. It was all picture and no sound. He looked lovely but he didn’t speak at all. I’m ashamed to say that after an hour or so sitting in the pub looking at him, I excused myself to go to the loo, jumped out the window and walked home. It was very awkward having to see him

in work the next day.

- Anna Young

Winner of our €50 ‘ONE4ALL’ voucher is Aidan Kelly, Co Kildare. Thank you to everyone for sharing their dating stories.

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