What everyone should know about first dates.
Be punctual. Arrive within 5 minutes of the agreed upon time.
Agree on a short first date – coffee or drinks. No movies, you can’t talk at a movie.
No commitment beyond it by either of you
To reinforce the idea that it’s a short date, plan on a weekday night. That gives you both the opportunity to end it early because you have to work (or do something) the next morning.
IF you think it’s going well, suggest the next part to continue the date – which you already had in mind. Maybe dinner. Know beforehand the types of food your date likes and have a restaurant picked out that serves it.
Goes something like this, “Are you hungry? There’s a great Chinese restaurant a few blocks away.” This gives them the option, they can say they’re not really hungry (meaning, they’re not interested) and beg off, or they will agree, and you can keep the date going.
Then again, if it’s definitely NOT going well, say goodnight and make sure your date makes it home ok. This isn’t your fault; not everyone gets along.
Agree ahead of time on the dress code. You don’t want to be in jeans while your date is wearing business casual.
Don’t answer your cell phone while on the date.
In fact, if it rings, make a point of turning it off in front of your date, showing that they’re more important than any call (You might even want to set this up to happen by having a friend call you at a pre-determined time).
Plan ahead with two or three things to talk about that are of interest to you AND YOU THINK THEY WILL FIND INTERESTING TOO.
Things NEVER EVER to talk about on a first date:
Things ok to talk about
Job (or school)
Books, tv, movies, music
Balance between talking and listening. Don’t hog the conversation, but always be ready with something to talk about when there’s a lull.
This could be just asking a further question about the subject if it’s interesting to both of you
Or, have in mind a “speaking of that…” segue into a new topic.
To kiss or not to kiss: Totally optional. A LOOSE hug and MILD peck are best (no tongue, unless you really clicked, in which case you don’t have to ask.) If you’re unsure, simply say, “Would it be ok if i kissed you?”
What about the future? Only bring it up if you want there to be one. This can’t be stressed enough. It’s better for both if either one isn’t interested just to say you’re not interested than to get someone’s hopes up only to be ultimately let down. That doesn’t mean you should be cruel about it. Just the opposite. The “It’s not you it’s me” approach is good in these cases.
DON’T SAY “I’LL CALL YOU” IF YOU DON’T PLAN TO.
DON’T SAY “WE SHOULD DO THIS AGAIN” IF YOU DON’T WANT TO.
While you might think it’s the compassionate way of letting someone down, it’s actually the opposite, like slowly tearing off a bandage over days.
When should you make the phone call for the next date? THE NEXT DAY. Not that night (too early and it might be inconvenient).
Don’t think you’re playing it cool by waiting past the next day. You’re not.
Don’t think you look over-eager by calling the next day. You’re not. It shows that you’re interested as well as considerate.
Besides, if you’re really going to make the call, why keep fretting about it? Get it done and allow both of you to move into the next phase of your relationship.
A general discussion of gender roles in the first date.
Here’s the problem. While society has moved far forward in gender equality, when it comes to dates, it’s generally still the responsibility of the guy to ask the girl out, plan the agenda, pick her up, pay for the date, and to initiate the goodnight kiss. Not that there’s anything wrong with either party if any aspect of it goes the opposite way — but that implies a great deal of self-confidence in both people to be comfortable with that “role reversal”.
That being said, gentle nudges on the part of the girl can be helpful to the guy. And the guy who makes all the arrangements without considering input from the girl is either a total egotist or just not very smart. And, it’s a nice gesture for the girl to offer to pay for some part of the date, maybe drinks or the cab ride. Most likely, he’ll say no anyway.