Deal Or No Deal? Always Honor Your Deal Breakers


In middle school, an English teacher of mine asked our class to compose an essay detailing our “criteria” for friendship as awkward 13-year-olds. “What does one of your peers have to be like in order to be your friend?” she posed to the class.

I remember immediately filling a sheet of notebook paper with a lengthy list of characteristics, ending with:

“Anyone who wants to be my friend has to be nice, fun and respectful to their parents. They also have to have a C+ average.”

I cringed when I read that line a few years ago after sifting through a box of old school notebooks and folders. In my 13-year-old head, grades were important indicators of character and as a good student myself, who systematically completed all of my homework on time and in a quality manner, I considered myself to be pretty generous in listing such an average GPA in my criteria.

As adults, grades no longer matter, but we still have our own deal breakers that cause us to pause in the dating world and re-evaluate the person in front of us before possibly calling it quits altogether. My 20-something list of deal breakers?

  • Smoking
  • Endless negativity
  • Apathy toward the future
  • Laziness
  • Someone who doesn’t consider faith a priority in their life

A recent thread in the Tobias & Sara forum listed many deal breakers for CatholicMatchers.

  • “Someone full of himself. Boastful and arrogant.”
  • “Being judgmental. If you don’t give people a chance. Not excepting the tolerance. Giving excuses.”

For you, what characteristics would make you move on from a potential significant other? Are all deal breakers serious or can they be light-hearted? Let me know!



  1. Ron-138381 May 21, 2013 Reply

    I do not believe in a detailed list of “deal breakers”. No one knows all. That’s almost like making a “perfect mate list”. All the criteria that in our own mind we require. Even if we found that mate that fit the perfect mate list, we wouldn’t be happy. We need new avenues,edges and experiences that differences can bring into a relationship. Deal breakers are fine for extremes like immorality or apathy towards the future. But who decides our friends and our partner is God.

  2. Ramona-738757 August 23, 2011 Reply

    Not knowing the difference between being pompous and pious.

  3. Karen-737048 August 21, 2011 Reply

    I agree; being judgmental & not giving the person a chance. Being dishonest is another one too.

  4. Marianna-748075 August 19, 2011 Reply

    Someone who lies, white lies! I rather you be really honest even if it hurts my feelings than lie!

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