Dating Advice

There are a few things that you should "Never Ever Do" on a date. The romantically challenged might want to check out the following advice to make sure that they avoid a social faux-pas that could result in a dating disaster.

First of all, "never ever bring a friend with you on a date." This might sound obvious to some, but it is amazing how many people believe that bringing a friend along will a) soothe their nerves, b) make them look less eager and c) express a charming lack of emotional availability to the date that he or she believes will make the date want him or her even more than ever!

The sad truth is that only very emotionally insecure people pad their dates with a third wheel or a posse of friends. Either the date will think that you are too insecure to make decisions (because you have to take a poll to see what your friends think) before you embark on a relationship) or that your relationship history is so bad your dates need to be monitored for quality control.

Another rule to remember is "never ever get too drunk." This one also sounds obvious but it is amazing how one drink leads to another when your nerves are frayed by the sight of a potential lover who makes you too nervous to even eat.

Needless to say, copious amounts of alcohol have been known to release more than sexual inhibitions. It can lead to the kind of confusion that has you going home with the wrong person.

In the worst case scenario, you might find yourself asking your partner "Will you respect me in the morning?" He or she might respond, "Why should I? I don't respect you NOW!"

A third law of dating is: "never, ever share too much." —Has anybody else noticed that we live in a confessional culture, one in which we are encouraged to "tell all at first sight"?!

It used to be that one could get to know someone else by asking, "what kind of movies do you like?" or "what kind of books do you read?"

I've noticed, particularly amongst the under thirty crowd, that a good way to get to know someone lately is to ask "what kind of vibrator do you use?" or "How many hundreds of dollars are you in overdraft?" This used to be the kind of thing that was never discussed in polite company, but nowadays it seems that one can never be too forthcoming with personal details.

Sometimes it is possible to get to know somebody too well, too soon to the point that knowing all about their little personality quirks and habits turns you right off. This is why you should "never ever give it all away."

When it comes to conversation, sometimes less is more. People who speed-talk, interrogate, brag, blab the family secrets or don't allow you to have one single moment's peace of mind are control freaks. It's like they think that if they are not talking, that they don't somehow exist. It also makes you wonder if you are allowed to have a thought that is NOT about them.

Also, never get too sarcastic. One sure turn-off, for most dates, is the over-use of unsolicited sarcasm. A sarcastic type will tell you that sarcasm is actually a device that is used to charm or woo the opposite sex. That it is a form of humor or discourse that many find witty and entertaining. That it is a way to demonstrate superior intelligence, or your prodigious powers of clarity, precision and personal observation.

Sarcasm is an obvious defense mechanism that is used to mask or disguise something deeply twisted in the personality. Instead of being sarcastic, why don't you just wear a T-shirt that says "Needy, approval seeking and insecure." Most sarcasm sounds like criticism, and criticism (especially if it isn't asked for) is recognized nowadays as verbal abuse.

Never ever lie about your past. Let's face it. Not everyone comes with a clean resume when it comes to relationships. Almost everybody has big mistakes, embarrassments and down right tragedies in his or her past. The question is, how much do you tell your new partner and how much do you lie about it?

There are two schools of thought about this. I tend to lean on the side that says it is a big mistake to talk about your exes to the new amour. For one thing, it can arouse unnecessaryjealousy. Take it from someone who has gone out with someone whose previous girlfriend was a supermodel. Believe me, you lie there wondering all night how you could possible compete with the past...

I believe that the less your partner knows about your sordid past the better, yet it is still a bad idea to lie to them if a certain subject that relates to your past comes up. The only possible exception to this rule is the "How many people have you slept with" question. If the number is over seventy and you are only twenty-five and female, it might be a good idea to subtract a few paramours.

"Never ever say I love you (unless you mean it)"

It is a cliche, but apparently playing "hard to get" actually works. It seems that the primal baby that is within all of us just can't stand being left out and ignored and will actually start seeking approval from those who seem to be withholding their affections. Both sexes are apparently turned off by displays of neediness and emotional security, so whatever you do don't reveal how lonely you are, don't reveal anything about your intentions and never ever beg for sex. And if you want to kill the potential relationship, completely, just utter these words "I love you" too soon into the relationship. As most women will tell you, it makes men run screaming for the hills.

Although most of us often feel compelled to be honest, it is not always the best approach when it comes to being a strategist in love. As twentieth-century wit Dorothy Parker said, "Spilling your guts is as ugly as it sounds...."