5 Things A Man Should NOT Do On The First Date
1. Dominate the conversation.
Here is a big palm-to-forehead for me. Like many other people of my generation, I dabbled in online dating. Some friends of mine experienced luck, some experienced creeps, but all of them had an interesting tale to tell, and I was ready for a little adventure. After weeding through the have-been-marrieds, the desperados, and the so-called “sexy” shirtless profile pictures (think: MySpace, camera phone in mirror –yes, it still happens post-age 14), I stumbled upon an interesting page. According to his profile we had similar interests, similar values, and had a high percentage of quiz-deemed compatibility!
So, we agreed to meet for a drink. When I arrived, nervous and excited, we sat at the bar and immediately ordered two beers to ease the tension (for which I paid). When I am anxious, I tend to ask a lot of questions to express interest in the other person, and so I fired away. And boy, did he ever take the bait! Shortly into the date I had had a couple of drinks and was able to more substantially contribute to the conversation (AKA, ask me a few questions, buddy!), but this guy was on a roll. I learned all about every job he had every held, every instrument he had ever played, his spiritual philosophies, his family tree, the time he broke his collar bone…it went on and on. Not once do I recall him deliberately shifting the conversation to me in curiosity of what I had to bring to the table. Because I was nervous, I let this slide, and chalked this selfishness up to his own nerves. A couple of try-again dates later, the man still did not express interest in knowing who I was…should have learned on date one. See ya!
2. Use his cellphone.
This should be a given, but unfortunately in this day and age our daily lives are so intertwined with technology that many people view their phones as extensions of themselves. There is nothing ruder than using your cellphone during ANY date, not to mention a first date! We all have those ever-connected friends who text and browse the internet in our company. As often as possible, I try to not spend much time with these people. And so in a mate? Forget about it! Focus on your date, enjoy the moment together, turn off your phone! A man who leaves his phone in his vehicle for the date is an even better contender in my book! Full attention means the world, and is a mark of maturity. No one is that important.
3. Talk about his ex(es).
If a man mentions an ex during a first date, this is a tell-tale sign that he is not over her or has not resolved the situation and moved on. He has emotional baggage, and a smart woman will recognize this and steer clear. First impressions are EVERYTHING – and you do not want your date thinking that you are still rebounding. If an ex comes up as a natural and unavoidable part of the conversation, resist the urge to bad-mouth, because this is even worse. Anyone that you have the need to bad-mouth is likely someone for whom you have unsettled feelings. Women are intuitive – ex-talk will spur flashing red “do not proceed” lights in their minds.
Any man who has the need to brag about his great career or his fancy car makes me believe that he is overcompensating for a lack in some other area. A self-assured, confident man does not need to resort to boasting about his accomplishments. Recently a man approached me, we got to talking, and within ten minutes of the conversation he honestly began telling me how much money he makes and how successful his business has been. I could not believe my ears: apparently there are some gold-digging women out there who fall for this, but I was immediately turned off. And I would have probably kept the conversation going for longer! Like Shania Twain says, “that don’t impress me much.” Seriously.
5. Interview his date.
A good friend of mine enters all first dates the same way. He has a list of must-haves that a potential mate need meet, and therefore (unsurprisingly), he is never satisfied. Rather than being open to new experiences and new people, my friend uses a rigid checklist for looks, family values, interests, humor, just everything you can think of, right off the bat, and if one of his points is not met, it is over before it has begun. The woman of course feels as though she has undergone a grueling interview process, which is why I have never attempted to set him up! Enjoy your date, get to know the person casually, do not enter a first date with a set of unbending expectations – you will always leave frustrated and dissatisfied. Some of my most fulfilling relationships have been with people that would never have made it to my “list.”
[Images via Shutterstock]