11 First Date Rules That Have No Place In Today’s World

We’re always told about the things we should and shouldn’t do on a first date, but many of the rules are so backward! Here are 11 guidelines to toss out the car window on your way to meeting someone new.

  1. Dressing to impress Of course you want to slay on your first date with perfect hair and a gorgeous outfit, but make sure you’re wearing what you normally like. Your appearance should promote your usual style and what makes you feel most confident. Don’t go OTT trying to be something you’re not. It’s seriously not worth it. You want your date to like you for who you are, and who you are is amazing anyway.
  2. Not asking him about his exes Yes, going on and on about exes can kill the vibe, but you should ask each other about your exes on the first date, in my opinion. You deserve to know the guy’s over his ex and that he hasn’t only been single for three days before asking you out, as well as if his ex might be trouble for your relationship
  3. Stressing out before the big event You might think you have to worry and stress about the date before it happens, otherwise, something’s wrong. But we’ve been trained to believe that without first-date nerves, we’re not invested in the guy or we’re wasting our time. Here’s a thought: maybe not having worries is a good thing. It means you’re calm, cool, and collected and that if the date tanks, you don’t have to stress about it. You can move on because you’ve lost nothing. That’s much more powerful.
  4. Not having full-blown dinner First date advice usually rules that having coffee or drinks instead of dinner is the best choice. But why? You can learn a lot more about someone by having dinner with them. While you tuck into the delicious pasta or steak you’ve ordered, you can get deep about life. There’s also a lot you can learn about someone by how they eat. For example, messy eaters or people who talk with their mouths open are deal breakers! Check, please! 
  5. Expecting him to pay Maybe you consider it chivalrous when a guy pays for the first date. Maybe not. It’s really up to you. The important rule to toss is expecting him to pay. The thing is, it’s not 1940. The least you can do is offer to go dutch.
  6. Not texting him after the date You might think that you have to wait for him to tell you he had a great time before striking up a conversation after meeting up, but why? If you want to thank him for the date, go right ahead. It’s just a text, not a marriage proposal. 
  7. Not kissing him or going back to his place There is something to be said for the slow burn when dating someone new. You might want to pace yourself when it comes to the physical aspect of your budding relationship… or not. And if not, then what’s stopping you from kissing him or having sex on the first date? You’re the only one who can make up the rules here because you’re the only one in the situation and know what feels right. 
  8. Meeting on a weeknight instead of the weekend Some dating advice out there states that you should try to meet for a first date during the week instead of on a weekend. This apparently puts less pressure on the date while keeping the date short. Whatever. Meeting on the weekend gives you more time to spend getting to know the guy. What if you’re having such a great time that you don’t want it to end? It really doesn’t have to. Plus, when he opens his weekend up to you, it’s a good sign he’s making you a priority in his schedule. 
  9. Not telling him what you want You might hold back from telling him what you’re looking for in a relationship because you don’t want to seem clingy. Screw that. You have a right to know where you stand and let him know your views and wants so that you don’t waste each other’s time. 
  10. Avoiding serious topics, like religion and politics Yeah, they can be heavy, but that’s only if people allow themselves to get touchy about witnessing different opinions on the subject. If he does that, then you know he’s a jerk, so it can be useful to take the conversation to those serious topics. Besides, if things like religion are important to you, then you should talk about them. The first date is about learning about each other, after all.
  11. Asking lots of questions It’s good to ask him about his values, lifestyle, hobbies, career, and so on, but you don’t have to fill every single silence that descends on the table. You don’t have to try hard to appear interested in what he’s into. Let things flow naturally. You might spend the whole time laughing about silly things, and learn lots about him in that way. Or, you might stare into each other’s eyes and not have words. Whatever works, works. It’s a date, not a job interview.
Giulia Simolo is a writer from Johannesburg, South Africa with a degree in English Language and Literature. She has been working as a journalist for more than a decade, writing for sites including AskMen, Native Interiors, and Live Eco. You can find out more about her on Facebook and LinkedIn, or follow her on Twitter @GiuliaSimolo.