Watch out for first date don’ts

BY PAULA SPARKS, SPARKS MATCHMAKING SERVICE

Stop! Don’t answer that cell phone! Here are 14 things not to do on a first date, or on the phone before you even meet.

1. Must you answer that cell phone???????

2. Don’t discuss you health. Not your surgery, not your stent, not your diagnoses, not your meds, not your type II diabetes, not your good cholesterol . . . .

3. Don’t ask her why she’s divorced or why she’s never been married. You really don’t want to hear the answer to the former, and the latter is an insensitive, hurtful question. (I used to get asked, “What’s wrong with you that you’ve never been married? “)

4. EVEN IF YOU ARE ASKED, do not discuss your ex, and don’t ask your date about his or her past relationships. Don’t ask, don’t tell. And don’t talk about custody battles, either.

5. If you like her, don’t try to get exclusive or possessive right away. She has a right to her own friends, including male ones, as long as she is not having a physical relationship with them.

6. Don’t tell your date you’re planning to move out of town because you’re not meeting anyone here. It just makes your date feel bad.

7. Don’t talk on the phone for hours before you ever meet. Talk briefly, like for 15 minutes, and then meet briefly for coffee, a drink, or ice cream, or even a walk (men: bring bottled water for your date.) Too many people are talking on the phone for many hours and they must be picturing the other person as a supermodel or superhero and then are disappointed when they finally do meet. And women: don’t expect a man you have never met to take you to an expensive restaurant on your first meeting. That is just not equitable.

8. Don’t monologue. Men seem to be more guilty of this. At the end of the date, can you name five of your date’s interests based on questions you’ve asked her? Can you name five things you have in common?

9. Don’t talk about other men or women whom you’ve dated or who are interested in you or whom you like, and don’t mention that you have more names to call.

10. Don’t embarrass your date by publicly announcing your religious or political affiliation or any other personal information to bystanders, e.g., “we need to finish our dinner because we’re going to a rally for the republican party. “

11. Men, before you meet, don’t ask your date if she’s attractive and don’t say that you only date cute girls. And to all, don’t ask your date if he or she is fat or tell your date that he or she is not attractive.

12. Don’t bug her about exactly where she lives or works and then show up unannounced. This usually backfires.

13. Don’t call a prospective partner after 9 p.m., again, without permission. Not everyone has the same schedule.

14. And last but not least, for the men, if you like her, don’t touch her. If you get to date #3, we can discuss this. Control yourself on date one or you might not get to date two.

Have I left you with nothing to talk about? No I haven’t. See item #8. This is mainly what you need to do on your first date. Stay tuned for the “Do’s. ” Until then, good luck!

Who is Paula? Sparks Matchmaking Service strives to connect Jewish individuals for the purpose of dating, marriage, and Jewish continuity. There is no charge for her services but donations are requested in order to improve the program and to attract new participants. She can be contacted at 314-721-3638 or [email protected]

Read Paula’s previous columns:

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