Saying the wrong things can turn your date off and sabotage your chances of finding Mr. Right.
So have you ever been on date with a guy and all of a sudden he says something that makes you say “That’s Crazy!” I mean seriously… the conversation can be going so well and unfortunately, it goes south because one of you says something that the other finds unattractive.
I can honestly say that I have been on both sides of the fence when it comes to this topic. There have been times where I have really been digging my date and he says something so off the wall that turns me completely off. There have also been times where I have said things that weren’t exactly appropriate for the early stages of the dating process.
Honesty is trait that we all look for in a mate but sometimes, I think that we tend to tell a little too much too soon. Guys… There is a time and place for every conversation and if you are on a quest to become a “good” dater, you have to learn the boundaries of discussion.
I always advise my daters on the "3 Date Rule”. This means you should go on 3 dates with a person and focus on building chemistry before you start divulging the sordid details of your past. I am not suggesting that you be dishonest or put up a front for your date. If they ask you question, by all means you should have an answer, but if the discussion does not come up, you might want to save that conversation until you feel that there is the potential for the relationship to move forward.
Here are 5 topics that should be off limits until after the 3rd date:
1. Your Type
So you have started dating and you have decided to try outside the box. This is a good thing because you are opening yourself up to possibilities that you may have missed out on in the past by sticking to a particular type of guy. I am a big fan of being adventurous when it comes to dating, but you do not have to relay this information to your date.
I suggest that you steer clear of statements like “I usually don’t date guys like you” or “You’re not the type of guy I usually go for”. It can create all types of ideas in your dates head and make them question whether or not they measure up to your standards. Dating is hard enough without having to deal with miscommunications. This conversation can take you on a path that your mouth may not be ready to handle effectively.
Instead, you should stick to phrases like “I find you intriguing” or “You seem like an interesting guy”. That way to conversation begins on a positive note and your brain is conditioned to communicate your dates “uniqueness” in a positive manner.
2. Anything Related To Past Relationships
Keep this stuff to yourself. Your date does not need to know how good or how dirty your ex did you. He also doesn’t need to know if you have cheated on a past mate or anything else surrounding your previous relationships.
If you are dating someone, your goal should be getting to know this person with the intention of forging a new relationship. If you are sincere about starting over, you really won’t have that opportunity if you have painted a less that attractive picture of your history. Of course if the question comes up, I would advise you to give a brief summary and don’t go off on a maniacal tangent of negativity that makes you look like a “bag lady”. Keep it short and sweet. “It just didn’t work out”
3. Sexual History or Preferences
Your date does not need to know the freaky highlights of your sexual conquests. He doesn’t need to know your “sex number”. He also doesn’t need to know the size of your package and what you can do with it. Having this discussion so early in the dating process sets up a sexual expectation and once that expectation is set, chances are that this is all that the relationship will be. If you are looking for a relationship that is driven by sex, then you should probably stay single and screw whoever the hell you want. If you are looking for a fulfilling relationship that is built on multiple aspects, you should keep this info to yourself. Besides… Showing is way better than telling.
DO NOT, I REPEAT DO NOT discuss money. How much you make, your spending habits, any of it. If you have a lot of money in the bank, that’s cool. It’s a personal accomplishment and it’s ok to be proud of it but keep it to yourself. It sets up expectations that you may not want to rule your potential relationship. It may also alienate your date if he doesn’t measure up financially. The only time money should be a discussion is if/when it becomes a responsibility that you share. Rule of thumb: on your first 3 dates you should expect to go Dutch.
PS. If your date asks you about money… You may want to run for the hills. It’s just better to steer clear of a potentially disastrous situation.
5. Future of a Relationship
Have you ever been on a date and the guy has pretty much mapped out your future together? I went on a date a few months ago and I was having a great time…until he started discussing my future as if we were a couple. This was only our second date and I really couldn’t believe how much detail this guy had put into this fantasy of his. How awkward is it to have someone you barely know talk about moving in together, being a power couple and raising kids before you finish your appetizers?
We all have daydreaming sessions and it’s ok to think about a potential future with someone but you need to keep that to yourself. Nothing says “crazy control freak” more than a person, you don’t really know, telling you how your relationship is going to pan out before you have had the opportunity to consider the idea for yourself. Nobody wants to feel pressured or forced into any situation, especially a relationship. Just take things day by day and let things develop naturally. If and when you become an exclusive couple, you can work together in order to develop those relationship goals.
The reality is that there are times and places for each of these discussions to take place. In my opinion anything before the 4th date is too much too soon and you run the risk of chasing away your date before you can foster the relationship. Take the time and build up your chemistry with your date before putting ALL of your business out there.
Besides being a YourTango Dating Expert, J. Cameron Gantt is the Head Dating Coach at Insti(Gay)tor, a Chicago-based GLBT matchmaking agency. Need advice? Contact him directly via YourTango.com/experts or visit www.instigaytor.com for more info.