Early days of dating

9 things to avoid in the first month of dating

by Eharmony Editorial Team - June 11, 2014

The early days of dating are filled with excitement and anticipation – the kind that gives you butterflies. But it’s also easy to make mistakes. Sloan Sheridan-Williams shares 9 things to avoid in the first month of dating 

Beyond the hearts and flowers, there’s always the risk of things not working out when dating. In the first few weeks it tends to be because something is said or done that turns the other person off. Sometimes the need for connection and love can lead to desperation and odd behaviour. Here are the 9 most common things to avoid when dating someone new… you have been warned!

1. Being late

Punctuality is paramount when you start dating. Keeping someone waiting is not only bad manners but is also disrespectful. If you’re someone who leaves things to the last minute, give yourself extra time to rendezvous with your date or even plan to get there earlier. If you’re late, always ring ahead to confirm you’re on your way and apologise sincerely when you do arrive.

2. Getting too drunk

Dutch courage can help relax first date nerves but remember that being a messy drunk is never a good look. The inability to drink responsibly suggests that you’re also irresponsible in other areas of your life. A good date will prefer you sober and slightly shy than drunk and disorderly.

3. Stalking

It’s always intriguing to learn more about your date when you first meet, but sometimes that inquisitive mind can turn you into a warped version of Sherlock Holmes, up at 3am stalking Facebook and Googling everything you can about your date. Step away from the computer and enjoy the uncertainty of getting to know them bit-by-bit through regular communication. Stalkers are not attractive.

4. Talking about your ex

This is a definite no-no at both ends of the spectrum. Whether you get on really well with your ex or you still stick pins in a voodoo doll, talking about your ex when you’re dating someone new does you no favours. No one wants to hear the gory details of your past break-ups so keep ex-chat to the bare minimum and focus on the present.

5. Using the L word

Saying ‘I love you’ too early makes you sound insincere. Don’t expect things to end happily if the L word gets aired in the first weeks of dating. It takes time for lust to develop into love and it’s rare for two people to feel the same about each other at exactly the same time. So, take things easy and enjoy the moment rather than rushing headlong into your next relationship.

6. Talking about marriage/kids

Although it’s important to make it clear to a new partner that you are ultimately looking to settle down and start a family, there is a right time and place – and that’s not in your first few dates. Premature talk about marriage and kids is just as bad as professing undying love for someone you’ve just met. As you get to know them better over time it will become clear how your date feels about marriage and whether your needs are compatible.

7. Criticising your date

There is a fine line between concern and criticism that must never be crossed when dating someone new. If your date is carrying a few extra pounds it is not for you to recommend they go on a diet. If you notice that you’re being critical of someone in the early days of dating then that person is probably not right for you. And you’re certainly not right for them!

8. Insulting anything or anyone

Everyone is entitled to an opinion. But when it comes to first dates, it’s probably better to check your strong views at the door until you know your date better. You may detest Welsh male voice choirs but the fact that their Uncle Hugo has been singing in one for the past 20 years isn’t going to go down well when you let your feelings be known.

9. Early to bed

When you meet someone you really feel connected to it can be very tempting to move things quickly up and have sex early on. However, sometimes it’s best to delay getting intimate until you’re sure of your feelings and theirs. It can be heartbreaking to find our your date is only interested in one thing if you’re actually looking for something a little more serious (and vice versa too!). Above all, dating is fun. So be yourself, enjoy meeting new people and trying new things!