The Importance of a First Date

One Date is enough

By Ken Solin

Dating Drama

My ears perk up when I hear a senior dater talks about the man or woman they recently met for a date and they can’t decide whether to go on a second date or not. I dated online for years, I write about senior dating, and I coach senior daters, so I’m always on the lookout for a new dating twist. While I rarely hear one that makes sense, it’s fascinating to listen to daters’ dating dramas.

One Is Enough

Yes, senior dating is fraught with problems, but how many dates it takes to know whether or not someone has good relationship potential for you shouldn’t be one of them. One is enough to know, and senior daters that insist they can’t decide after one date simply aren’t asking the right questions.

Remember Your Game Plan

It’s difficult to remain calm, cool, and collected on a first date, which I highly recommend is coffee in a crowded café. People tend to tense up and whatever their game plan was, usually goes right out the window along with their best intentions. Remembering that a coffee date is an interview of sorts can help seniors maintain the right perspective.

Why did you agree to in person? Hopefully you read their online profile and liked what they had to say because it resonated with you. Perhaps you liked their smiling photo. You exchanged an email or two and you both decided it was time for a meet and greet.

Emotional Intelligence

Seniors having coffee

Senior relationships aren’t easier than when we were younger. Emotional skills are the key issue that makes relationships work. Without emotional skills, problems are guaranteed to arise and more often than not, never get resolved. It’s critical to ask about personal growth work, because that’s how emotional skills are developed. It illustrates that your date is aware of their flaws and is willing to address them actively. 

No Fear

There can be a lot of fear around asking this question because you’re really asking if your date is emotionally healthy and/or evolved. But consider the consequences of not asking. You risk dating someone who doesn’t have the basic emotional skills to be in a relationship.

Lots of Growth Possibilities

There are many types of personal growth work, and individual therapy is just one. Lectures, books, workshops, magazine articles, groups, long-term friendships, and other forms of personal growth work are viable. But absent any it’s unlikely your date will have the emotional skills relationships require.

Don't Hesitate

stop sign

Seniors in particular don’t have time to waste in dead end relationships. Sure, it can be difficult to walk away from a handsome guy or a beautiful woman simply because they lack emotional skills, but you’re doing yourself a favor by avoiding an impossible relationship and a heart-wrenching breakup.

Basic But Not Universal

These skills are basic, and every senior should have gleaned some emotional skills. In a perfect world maybe, but in the real world a fair number haven’t. This is when good self-esteem is your most important quality. If you’re honest with yourself after a first date you’ll know whether a second one is smart.

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About Ken Solin

Author and columnist Ken Solin is a boomer Dating Expert for The Huffington Post, AARP, and About.com. Solin also writes about boomer sex and relationships. Ken’s new book, The Boomer Guide To Finding True Love Online offers real-life boomer dating solutions based on Ken’s online dating experiences. Learn more about Ken and his dating philosophy.

 

 

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