We can talk about your first date if you want to. We can review the “he said…then I said…then he said” bits. We can wonder if you should email or text or call. But we already know your story. At least if you want to.

I will dissect voice mails and texts all day long. It will keep me off of zillow. I am happy to share this distraction with you. As long as you know it is a distraction.

It has been six weeks since your first date. If isn’t happening…it isn’t happening.

It may in fact be the timing or the location. It really may be nothing about you, or him, or you and him together. But if it were going to happen. We wouldn’t be talking texts. You two would be picking out your thanksgiving turkey. The difference between the rose in bloom and the decaying petals on your shoe is how well you can interpret your first date.

Here are five kinds of first dates:

1. Mutual escorts. You have plenty to talk about. You may bump noses in your goodnight kiss. In another life you would be friends. But you are both single so you make plans places together. You try to convince yourself you feel something. He is good on paper. Lists are good on paper.

Next step: Find a gay guy to be your event date. Have lunch with this one. It may stroke your ego, but when he gets possesive cut him loose.

2. Fun until you fuck. Lots of laughs. A long late date. Banter, double entendres, questions in the emails, by the third date you are in the bedroom. He doesn’t go radio silent, but the banter slows, dates spread out. Its a subtle fade away.

Next step? : If you want something casual keep it up. But never, ever imagine it will grow stronger. You had the best of him already. He showed you that with the post coital retreat.

3. Whoosh. It feels good. The date is longer, closer, more intense. He may cook for you. You really connect, you imagine a future. Then he actually TALKS about a future. The next date is one the books. You float away in happiness. He disappears. Gone. Probably dead. I mean, he must be dead because nothing else would keep him away from you. Except the whoosh.

Next step ?: None needed. He’s gone already. Try not to find him on facebook. Nothing good will come of that. And when you run into his friend at the dog park and she asks you how your trip to Boston was? Try to play it cool. She doesn’t need to know about the whoosh.

4. Borderline. This is the tricky one to ID. At least for the person dating him. I can tell from your tone of voice on the phone that he is borderline. You are happy, but not giddy. You have questions, but you interrupt yourself providing logical explanations. He didn’t quite whoosh away. He sends charming texts, almost as if he can sense your questions. He is doing nothing wrong. He is hot, smart, funny. And you are still wondering. That is how you know. If you feel anything but full on pursuit coming from him it is not going to happen. I mean, it could stretch on. You could date for a long time. You could even date exclusively. This is no life partner though. At least not for you.

Next step: Figure out if you are really looking for the one. Maybe 80% of the one is actually what you want. As soon as you give an ultimatum you must bail. That action shows that you want more. This is important information for yourself. Not for him. It doesnt matter what he things because we are not playing games here. So stay or go, but you decide. His actions from here on out are irrelevant.  *Caveat, if you are under 28 he could potentially turn into the one. But frankly there will be a lot of waiting and self doubt involved so I’m not sure I would recommend that. Might be more efficient to end it, see what else is out there, and let him “find you” again a bit later, when he realizes that you are in fact the best.

5. The one. The first date lasts 36 hours. He is super into you and it doesn’t make you feel the least bit creepy. You are just you. You have no list of if onlys. . .(he was over 5 ft 10, he had a hot accent accent, he were a lefty)  You don’t catch yourself tugging at your shirt or powdering your nose or nibbling on the skin by your thumb or using planned out lines or google referenced song lyrics. You ask questions and remember his answers. He asks questions and makes eye contact. You share interests. The idea of going grocery shopping together sounds hot. Your words spill out. Your silence isn’t scary. You give each other permission. For anything.

What’s next: The hard work comes next. Enjoy this part. Its the honeymood phase.

Bottom line. Forget the games. If he doesn’t like you because you like pop music that is just efficient sorting. You will need to meet a lot of these guys before one fits. Make it easy for everyone. Be yourself, ask for what you want and cut loose the ones who don’t make you drop everything to answer their call. When you end it tell them why as honestly as you can without being hurtful. It will help them move on, and possibly make them more appealing for the next person.

I know how exhausting this is. I got a dog to meet a guy. Being single is right for lots of people. If it is not right for you get going. There are going to be lots and lots of dates 1-4 before date 5.

OK readers. Single? Have you seen these types? Are you fruitlessly trying to transition a borderline guy into the one? Married? What was your first date like?

How to interpret your first date.

 

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Anna Rosenblum Palmer is a freelance writer based in Denver, CO. She writes about sex, parenting, cat pee, bi-polar disorder and the NFL; all things inextricably intertwined with her mental health. In her free time she teaches her boys creative swear words, seeks the last missing puzzle piece and thinks deeply about how she is not exercising. Her writing can be found on Babble, Parent.co, Great Moments in Parenting, Ravishly, Good Men Project, Sammiches and Psych Meds, Playpen, Crazy Good Parent, and YourTango. She also does a fair amount of navel gazing on her own blog at annarosenblumpalmer.com.

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