Sometimes you meet someone online, sometimes in real life. However it happens, if you’re interested in them and they seem to reciprocate, you’ll have a few obstacles to overcome to upgrade the acquaintance, including the First Date (FD). FDs may be super awkward but there are few tricks that may minimize the weirdness.
One of the most important, and not that obvious, things is to make sure that both sides are aware of the fact that they’re on a date. It happened to me once that I thought I was on a date and I wasn’t (a guy who was clearly into me asked me to go to the movies with him and was trying to make a move all movie long but he still thought it was just friends hanging out). It was even weirder, however, when I was sure I was just having drinks with a friend and he thought we were on a date after which he referred to us as “casually dating” (drinks only, split bill, no touch, no kiss! Really?). If your situation is not as straightforward as meeting someone from the online dating world, make sure you make things clear so not to embarrass yourself.
The choice of activity is important too and I think the easiest FD is just to go out for drinks. At your place is way too intimate, activities can go wrong with people who are just learning to know each other and are trying to impress the other person, and a full-on dinner can cause “a bill crisis” (a guy being rinsed if a girl is only after a free meal, a more liberal chick being offended if a guy insists on paying) and/or general awkwardness of eating in front of a stranger.
The length of the date matters too – make it short and sweet so that you look forward to seeing a person again if it’s successful or you don’t get discouraged towards dating in general if your date decides to share details of their medical procedures with you. Rather leave making out sessions for a later stage too (pol. lepiej nie is dupy strony). The piece of advice is far from prudish – if you’re looking for fun go for it but if you’re looking for someone you’re an actual match with rather don’t let your sense overcloud your sensibility, otherwise you may end up dating someone you have little in common with.
Last but not least, use a tit-for-tat technique with sharing your personal details. If they tell you about their travels, tell them about yours, but maybe don’t spend too much time dwelling over abusive relationship with your first boyfriend or general difficulties with dating, unless you can tell that the other side is interested in the discussion and volunteers their more emotional stories too. Sharing may be bonding so if you keep things light it’ll benefit you. Over sharing, on the other hand, may cool the other person’s passion (“I don’t get well with the majority of my schoolmates. Do you think there’s something wrong with me?” just to quote yours truly from one of her FDs ever).
A FD is just the first obstacle to overcome on the relationship highway (wink wink) and if it goes well, who knows where it can take you. Even if it really didn’t go well when things get settled between the two of you, it becomes a fond memory. If a FD requires a lot effort and is absolutely horrible than the person probably isn’t right for you.