Dos and don'ts of first dates as you get back in the game

Jan 3, 2012, 8:22 a.m.

When you are a mature person and about to reenter the dating game, you can be challenged by current first date rules, regulations and conduct. You should not adopt an MTV, Jersey Shore attitude. Unless your first date is with a 22-year old club-hopping young lady, think twice about your propensity for coolness, which may identify you as an older "lounge lizard."

Observe more conservative online dating tips that allow you and your guest to maintain dignity, while also having a wonderful time. Whether or not you both want to "tee it up" again for a second date, these online dating tips will help you enjoy even an all too brief relationship.


Be yourself; lose the pretenses. This dating advice always works well — unless your true self is sitting around in your T-shirt, swilling warm beer and watching reality shows (at least watch baseball or football). If this is the real "you," bringing a pretense might help. Being yourself does not involve discussing time spent in federal prison or being arrested for prostitution when you were 23. It does involve unveiling positive features of your personality and displaying high character.

Focus on listening skills. There is a good reason you were blessed with two ears and one mouth — listen twice as much as you talk. If you want to make a good impression, remember this: For most people, the most fascinating topic in their world is themselves. Try to adopt a balance between being uncommunicative and a conversation hog.

Have fun. Remember, it is only a date, not a lifelong commitment. Enjoy yourself. Your date may also have fun.


Do not pretend. Unless you are an accomplished actor, do not pretend to be someone you are not. The truth will surface, typically before the end of the date.

Do not make snap decisions, favorable or unfavorable. First impressions are important, but they are not always accurate. Give your date the latitude to show who they really are. Then decide if a second date is warranted.

Do not end on a low note. Unless the date was a disaster, end your first date on a high note, leaving a second date a possibility. Even if there were few sparks during the date, you might be pleasantly surprised at the flames of a second date.

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