The First Date Ideas

So you’ve made contact with a very interesting Match.com member, but you’ve been putting off meeting face-to-face. Things are fine as they are, you tell yourself. I’ll feel too much pressure if we actually meet; we’ll have to decide to keep seeing each other or not. What if only one of us wants to? Or neither of us? It’s risky, and it jeopardizes our current connection.

Reality check! You’re both at Match.com for a reason. Maybe both of you will decide to see each other again, and maybe this is the match you’ve been waiting for. And after all, with Valentine’s Day this week, it’s a great opportunity to make your first date.

Do’s

1. Be on time. Don’t you dare worry about appearing too eager if you’re the first one there. And fashionably late only applies to parties. Concentrate on being polite, considerate and respectful during this first date.

2. Wear what you said you’d wear. Don’t fib so you can have the advantage of seeing your date without being seen; it’s cowardly and rude. If you’re a clotheshorse, don’t choose a “better” outfit at the last minute. All the outfits in the world won’t change who you are.

3. Ask questions. I’m not talking about an interrogation, but everyone is flattered when asked about their interests. Ask leading questions and listen attentively; there may be a test later.

4. Answer questions. Let your personality shine through with your responses, and remember that optimism is more attractive than pessimism. Stay positive.

Don’ts

1. Don’t be selfish. A monologue is not a conversation. If you do all the talking, your date will be bored. You’ll bore your date if you don’t talk enough too. Your goal should be to create a fairly balanced exchange.

2. Don’t order messy foods. Some of us can’t help ourselves when faced with spaghetti sauce, melted butter or blueberry pie. A food stain on yourself may be “charming,” but splattering your date with food is a definite dating don’t.

3. Don’t be rude if you decide your date is a dud. Unless you want to rack up some bad dating karma, be honest but gentle. “I don’t think we’re as compatible offline as I thought,” should suffice. Don’t say you’ll call if you know you won’t.

4. Don’t play coy. If you’re interested, say so — even at the risk of rejection. No guts, no glory.

Some more points to consider:

Choose somewhere easy
Avoid crowded places on your first date so you can spot each other easily. Maybe wear something distinctive, although you’ll probably want to avoid the carnations or silly hats.

Tell a friend
Always tell a friend where you are going, and meet somewhere public for your first date. It’s also best to make your own way to and from the venue – don’t get your date to pick you up. After your first meeting, if you don’t feel comfortable, don’t continue the relationship. Simple as that.

Don’t break the bank
You don’t have to flash your cash on a first date, so why not meet for a coffee or lunch? You can then decide if you’d like to spend more time and money on another date.

Go dutch
It’s sometimes a good idea to agree to split the bill before your date, so you’ll avoid any awkward situations when the plates have been cleared.

Be considerate
If you need to cancel a date, call the other person in good time.

Don’t get disheartened
You might not meet the right person straight away – don’t be disappointed. Relax, be yourself and most importantly, have fun. Every week we attract new advertisers and respondents.

Make it safe
Arrange meetings in public places, eg restaurants, pubs, etc, not in your home. Don’t give your address until you are sure that you want to continue the relationship. Trust your instincts and don’t meet again if you have any doubts. On your first meeting, it is best to make your own way to and from the venue. It is best not to accept an offer of transport. Leave details of your meeting with family or friends when seeing a respondent for the first time. These points may seem over-cautious, but if the person you meet is genuine, they will understand.

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