You are probably reading this post because you are “starting over” you may well be out of practice with 21st century style of dating, in particular “online” and you may be a bit fearful.
Dating in your 50s 60s or 70s comes with a different mindset. Let me help you with some Do’s & Don’ts
- Try not to Compare – Have an open mind
- Let’s Talk About Sex – You Can Say NO (not yet)
- Don’t talk about the Ex or previous Loves during your first date – He Neither
- Your Children – Don’t hijack the conversation with their success (or disappointments)
- Be Kind & Honest – Just be You, Don’t Embellish
- Be Brave – First Date will be nerve racking,
- Set a Time Boundary & tell a Friend – Gives Both Peace of Mind
- Remember He is Likely to be Nervous Too
Let’s kick the nerves away by discovering how to manage your first and subsequent dates.
Your Date Is Looming & The Doubts Are Creeping In
It is normal to be apprehensive, you may well possibly be felling a little fearful, it’s probably been some time since you last dated. Let’s deal with this “Head on”
Spend some time on yourself, I have written a post which may help you to regain some of the lost confidence. (Click Here – Finding Love Where to Start). Do you remember your youth? The Getting Ready before a big night out, it was part of the fun and helped create the memory. Whilst I don’t suggest the 3+ hours it took to emerge into the butterfly of yesteryear I do nevertheless recommend some extra time, more than you would normally devote, it helps the mindset and allows you to get into the zone
Be proud of yourself, if you need glasses for reading, then wear them, or if you need hearing aids to assist your hearing then again wear them. Perhaps (if you can afford) invest in the latest (almost invisible) new hearing aids which barely notice.
Another solution to halt the creeping doubts and nerves is, meet for lucnch or a drink in the afternoon instead of the evening, it’s far less intimidating and is more casual. If you don’t want to meet in a pub then suggest meeting for a coffee first. This will take away the pressure and allow you to feel more in charge of your emotions.
Try not to overdress, especially if meeting in the afternoon, wear clothes befitting the location. Nothing will make you more nervous than feeling over or under dressed. A well-placed scarf or accessory will work just as well as an expensive dress. I would also suggest not wearing the new high heels on your first date. Whilst I don’t suggest the comfy dog walking shoes I do suggest a good pair of shoes that are not necessarily open toed. Being comfortable with being comfortable is a step in the right direction. Be proud of who you are
Do I Shake Hands?
How will you greet him, how do you normally greet a man that you dont know?, do you hug or kiss a cheek or do you just say “Hello” be yourself, my suggestion in the very first instance is to just say “hello” without touching. Unless a rapport has been built over time on the phone or internet. This will take the pressure off and you won’t be worrying beforehand.
So now you are sat down in front of him, a few little good behaviour pointers. Keep the mobile on silent, try to keep away from an area where you will know people as being distracted is also a little rude. Keep eye contact. If you like him you are allowed to flirt in a grown up kind of way. But if it doesn’t feel right then don’t do it. Offer to take it in turns to purchase any drinks and offer to pay half of any food. Having a time boundary will also give you an out if you find it’s not quite right but also keep you wanting to see him again, and he you.
From the outset find a few things you like about him, this will keep you from pre judging, and as the date continues figure out and find additional things you may like. Keep an open mind and try not to compare him to any man you may have previously known.
Ask him about him, what he likes, (not what he doesn’t) ask him about his hobbies and where he has travelled, what is his favourite place was and why. I would strongly suggest you don’t bond over any baggage as this can leave you feeling negative. This will help and allow you to see if you share the same values and ultimately if you are compatible
Listen To Your Gut
For the most part your date will be as nervous and as apprehensive as you. But a red flag would be if he is overly demonstrative, overly nervous or overly trying to please. It may seem obvious, but keep alert to red flags.
These could be as simple as “he seems too good to be true” or, “he seems to be perfect” be mindful if his ex, when described, seems uncomfortably unreasonable. Another red flag is the “poor me” without any humour, on the other hand self-deprecating and humility is good.
I would always suggest on the first date you be mindful of conversation boundaries, keep yourself safe and don’t overshare. There will be time to share later down the line but oversharing at the outset can cause you a lot of worry as you don’t know enough about this person to know if you can trust him yet. It’s all about keeping yourself safe both physically and mentally.
If something doesn’t feel right then stop
If on the other hand you like what and whom you are speaking to then continue with cautious optimism.
Is not just about discussing your previous life, relationships or mistakes but also don’t overshare about your current life, family members, privacy details (like sharing your location on a mobile app) and financial stuff.
Photos – if you are asked to send or receive photos which you are uncomfortable with, this too is a red flag. If you don’t want a selfie with him then don’t have one.
Regardless of peer pressure or if he is telling you “everyone sends photos these days” if you don’t feel comfortable with photos then it’s ok to say no.
Enjoying The Moment
Whilst we have discussed “red flags” and also looked at how to avoid meeting the narcissist, there is every likelihood you will be meeting a like-minded soul, for this reason enjoy the moment and try not to think of pitfalls, concerns or generally overthinking, if at the end of the date or on later reflection you don’t wish to pursue further then just look at the meeting as an enjoyable
intervention. Not this will be a waste of time, its also worth remembering not every date will be Mr Perfect, but with the right mindset it will always be a positive outcome (regardless of what the future holds)
Something Else You May Have Considered
A Related question which you may have asked Google.:
RQ1/ “Is it ok to Call him”? So first date is over and you have’nt heard from him. The suggestion is to send a text, if he doesn’t respond then don’t chase.
RQ2/ How will I know if we are compatible? Conversations surrounding what is and isn’t important to him and if he shares your values.
RQ3/ I am looking for Love, what if he is just looking for fun? It’s never a good idea to head out looking for love, it is something which is a killer for many. Love may grow but not if the environment is stuffy, restrictive and needy. You may need to reevaluate if you are dating solely to look for love
Thank you for reading thus far, I look forward to hearing your thoughts and how you handled your first date, comment below.
Founder of Hey Spring Chicken
Pixabay, Splash, own