Anyone who’s watched at least three episodes of Seinfeld knows that what makes or breaks a relationship is a very personal thing.
… Or is it?
A recent survey of more than 6,500 adults showed that men and women tend to share similar high-ranking dealbreakers.
Our natural follow-up question: What are they?
To find out, we turned to the court of public opinion, by asking 15 real, live, sex-having women, "What exactly tend to be the straws that break the damsel’s back?"
Lily, 27, Marketing Coordinator
Single — some days more than others
“Voting for Donald Trump. Not reading books or having an understanding of current events. Asking the same questions that have already been addressed on dates one through five.”
Jean, 30, Financial Services
Six years single and fucking exhausted
“Jesus, so many. Short list of immediate DQs: loud chewing/lip-smacking, woman-hating, social conservatives, jerking off and finishing on me when I don't want to f*** you right away (Why is this even a thing?! How does it keep happening?!!), compulsive dating app users, perfectionists, emotional dishonesty, name-droppers/braggarts, social media oversharers. And ‘salesmen’: the guys who know how to manipulate the f*** out of a person — aka don't make me feel crazier than I already am, thanks.”
Winona, 29, Interior Designer
There isn’t time to explain
“Nothing turns me off more than a person who acts like he's better or cooler than everybody else. Talking s*** about or excluding people based on ridiculous superficial details won’t get you anywhere either. Just be a nice, considerate human. If you're rude to waiters or cab drivers, or tip poorly (when not justified), I'm also out. And bad hygiene kills me; deodorant is a non-negotiable no-brainer.”
Otto, 34, Magazine Editor
Coupled up and in it to win it
“Dating, for me, is like going shopping for a solid outfit. I don’t need it oversold to me: I’ve been dressing myself my whole goddamn life. It cannot require too much attention: no one has time for a dress that needs a duvet. And an outfit that was one color on the first trial and turned a completely different color three days later, I would return for a full refund. And tell all of my bright and attractive friends to never shop there. ‘That store, that’s for 21-year-olds with disposable incomes and a loose moral thread,’ I would say. I just want to casually try something on and see if it’s a good fit for both me and the outfit together. Also, I would never buy an outfit that had poor manners, cried on the first date, showed up wasted, didn’t share my sense of humor and either didn’t want to use a condom or can’t keep it up with a condom. It’s not 1972 — you’re gonna have to figure that s*** out."
Nicole, 45, Dermatologist
Divorced and dating without determination
“I won’t even make it to the second date if they have: a negative attitude about life, don’t take care of themselves physically, have outlandish expectations or are financially unstable. You better show me off the bat that I won’t be picking up every check.”
Sonya, 35, Event Producer
Married and awesome at it
“A dealbreaker would be someone super focused on only the exterior and also just a guy who is inflexible, unable to see other sides of an issue. Basically super stubborn and closed-minded. Men who are open-minded and interested a variety of cultures, ideas and values make me clench.”
Ariana, 37, Marketing
Single and in the game
“I don't have many, because I believe you have to take the time to get to know someone: no one is perfect out of the gate. The ones I do have are closed-mindedness and rigidness — sort of the same thing — and also rudeness. I cannot tolerate someone with bad manners, and I'm talking fundamental manners, as in opening and holding doors, table etiquette and decent language skills. Oh, and must love cats and bourbon.”
Shelly, 28, Grad Student
Nobody got time for that
“A dealbreaker for me is a partner who is not enterprising. I want someone who is wheeling and dealing to make a life and experience that's better than the one they just had. Did this person just snag a cheap flight deal with credit card miles? Or, working on a startup idea at night? Or, throwing themselves into a new skill? Or, trying to figure out how they can quit their job and go back to what they love? If it’s ambition, I’m in.”
Stella, 32, Personal Assistant
Getting pretty domestic
“Dealbreakers are so specific to each person. All I can say is make sure you have them and make sure they are for the right reasons. The guy I'm with now would have never made it past the third date in my 20s. But at some point I realized I would rather have a guy who showed up, was consistent and put me first.”
Andrea, 30, Producer
Madly in love
“Mysterious behavior. And not the good, sexy-type mysterious — the kind where he disappears for days. When he reappears, he just has to see you because he's crazy about you. If a guy is ‘crazy’ about you, then he'll find a way to be available and make time for you.”
Bethany, 28, Model/Actress
Single. Why do you ask?
“Won’t work if I find out you've been with any of my friends. Additionally, if you’re pretentious and talk yourself up or talk about money, I find that incredibly ugly and would not go out with that person again. Any guy that’s only dated ‘models’ is best to stay away from. If you’re a promoter — that’s also a dealbreaker. And, anyone pushing their personal religious beliefs on me, whether they’re overly religious or talking about Mercury or whatever planet in retrograde, I throw up in my mouth.”
Layla, 31, Graphic Designer
Living happily in sin
“Turning the lights off during sex when they were already dimmed. Telling me you like my teeth and want them in a jar by your bed. (Yes, that happened.) Asking to do drugs off my friend’s boob and then getting pissed when she says ‘No.’ (Also happened.) Being possessive. Calling me ‘Boo.’ Having bad breath or BO. Lying about your height online.”
Katie, 29, Film Producer
Single and currently focusing on no. 1
“Personalised license plates. Never cool. Similarly, talking too much about money. Success is great and sexy, but a showoff is not.”
Zosia, 32, Print Manager
Single and half-assing it
“A terrible voice. I force guys to talk to me on the phone before I even agree to a date.”
Frances, 32, Creative Consultant
Married and very stoked about it
“If he is still not over the ex. Really, how many freaking times do I have to console a friend about getting into a relationship with someone who hasn't properly moved on from their ex?! If they are not emotionally ready to start a new relationship, don't force it. Your heart and mind have to be open to getting into a serious relationship. If the person is really not there, don't waste your time! Unless you are looking for a f*** buddy. Then by all means! Just don't PDA. PDA = you are emotionally involved. Oh and I also think a guy who has primarily all female friends is a no-go. Seen a few of these in action — he’s a cheater every time.”