The Ick Factor

by Tamar Caspi under Date Night,Online Dating,Single Life

When you don’t like your date, you don’t just not like your date… but you see every little flaw and every little tick and every little everything that bothers you.

It’s called the Ick Factor. Once someone bugs you, then you see all the things about them that wouldn’t have normally bothered you. When you don’t like someone, then you will either look for things wrong with them or things will just pop out and annoy you to no end. When you know someone is wrong for you, then you will notice and get icked out by the way they talk, laugh, chew, walk, sit, stand, and basically, exist. Those things wouldn’t bother you if you liked the person.

Realize that this is normal, this is not a match, maintain your dignity, and — after the date — thank the other person for a nice time and move on. Don’t try to see if the ick factor will go away — it won’t.


Flirting or Fun?

by Tamar Caspi under Date Night,JDate,Online Dating,Single Life

There is a fine line between being fun and being flirtatious when you have just met someone and you’re in the beginning stages of getting to know one another. Texting will only make this distinction more difficult, so try to stay away from SMS for as long as possible.

After a good first date, you want to let your match know you had a good time without moving too far too fast. So, pick up the phone to tell them how much fun you had, engage in a little small talk, and then make plans for a second date. Make sure your voice is warm and you’re engaging by smiling when you’re talking. Also, be sure to make the call in a location where you are not stressed (i.e. at work or in front of people). Don’t venture into the gray area of talking about wanting to “continue a good night kiss” or “looking forward to seeing your sexy self” because that sounds like your intentions are not serious.

Build on the momentum of a great first date by calling the next day to make plans as soon as possible.


Over-Sharing

by Tamar Caspi under Date Night,Online Dating,Single Life

There are certain things that are not to be shared on a first date. If it has to do with sex, drugs, or any other illicit activity, then hold off… maybe forever. Lots of things fall under the sex category, including nudity, number of partners, pornography, strippers and so on. Anything along those lines should be considered over-sharing. Drugs include both the prescription kind as well as the illegal kind. No one needs to know about that on a first date! Money, why past relationships ended, and anything having to do with drama can wait for another date.

First date topics should start with continuing the email conversations you began, which usually address your commonalities. Just let it flow naturally from there. If you find the rapport waning, then revert to asking questions from the JDate profile. “Remind me again where you went to school/where you grew up/what you do for a living/how many siblings you have?” Those are always easy ways to get the conversation going again.


Respect the Text

by Tamar Caspi under Date Night,Single Life

Enough recent stories made me realize that everyone needs a reminder not to text before you are seriously dating someone… and especially not before your first date!

Unless you are texting to confirm the date or to say you’re running a few minutes late, do not text conversational or abstract things until at least after the third date! Your date does not want — or need — to know that you are on your way to the gym, or getting your haircut, or watching TV, or anything else before you’ve even met for the first time. Lay off the texting people!

Less is more before a first date; it creates a sense of mystery and allows you to build up excitement and anticipation, which are the emotions you want to experience before a first date!


To Thine Own Self Be True

by Tamar Caspi under Date Night,JDate,Online Dating,Relationships

What do you do when you meet someone on JDate who has selected “Never” under the “Drinking Category” when you like your glass of wine or bottle of beer at night?

How do you handle flirting with a non-smoker when you love your cigarettes?

What’s your initial reaction when you receive a message from a cute vegetarian, but you pride yourself on being a carnivore?

You have to be true to yourself, and you can’t pretend to be someone you’re not when you’re looking for “forever.” Don’t hesitate to order a drink on your date just because he or she doesn’t imbibe, unless of course they are in AA and then you need to discuss how they feel about it first. If you never plan on quitting smoking, but your date is disgusted by the scent of cigarettes, then you might not want to light up, but you also need to make it clear that you don’t plan on stopping until you feel like it (quitting for someone else never works). Eating out with someone with differing eating habits shouldn’t be a problem, but be respectful of their choices when ordering on their behalf or cooking at home.

Some differences are good, others are a dealbreaker. Again, as long as you’re keeping it real and respectful, then there’s no reason it couldn’t work.


Cutting Through the Crap

by Tamar Caspi under Relationships

Most first, second, and even third-date conversations follow a similar order of topics. And as people begin to open up and tell you about themselves, they tend to embellish, exaggerate, or simply make everything in their life sound pretty awesome. But no one’s life is ever so glossy and polished.

It can be difficult to know what’s the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. Somewhere in there is a half-truth, an omission, or a blatant lie… but it’s not always easy to figure out what those things are. It’s normal to want to make everything sound nice, but it can set you up for major disappointment later.

Is your date being vague in describing why his or her last relationship ended, or how successful their business is? Is there a lot of name dropping and the use of a lot of people, places and things to impress you? You may never know the full extent of the amount of the bull people spew (everyone does to some extent), and unfortunately there will be at least a few times when you find out the hard way — after you’ve fallen in love — and you’ll have to decide how important those misrepresentations are.


Making Plans vs. Being Spontaneous

by Tamar Caspi under Date Night,JDate

It’s considered quite chivalrous to make plans for a first date ahead of time, but it’s also risky since you don’t necessarily know the other person’s likes and dislikes (or allergies and aversions). On the other hand, it is fun to be spontaneous on a date, but can seem like you didn’t make any effort, or put any thought into it, and therefore aren’t very interested.

So what’s the best route to take? A combination of the two. Ask your date what their favorite food is (or check their JDate profile!) and make reservations for dinner, but then leave the time afterwards open to decide where to go together for a drink. Or, conversely, have a plan in mind to start the night at a trendy bar for drinks, but then ask your date what to do next if you hit it off and want to continue spending time together.

You can also make reservations at two or three different locations and ask your date to pick one (just be sure to quickly call and cancel the other reservations as a courtesy), that way you show you made an effort, but are also thoughtful and willing to be flexible.


Impulse Control

by Tamar Caspi under Date Night,JDate

Some people don’t think before they speak. And that can lead to some awkward moments on a date where one person puts their foot in their mouth after apologizing for being rude or belligerent — and the other person needs to wipe a disgusted and/or shocked look off their face.

Honesty is not always the best policy. Sometimes omission is best.

  • Don’t ask a question if you don’t want to know the answer
  • Don’t tell a date that you were “here last week on another JDate”
  • Don’t tell a date that you have too many emails on JDate to read through, so they should consider themselves lucky.

If you are about to make a comment that you wouldn’t want to hear from your date, then keep it to yourself.


Don’t Let Your Nerves Get The Best Of You

by Tamar Caspi under Date Night,Single Life

I’ve witnessed many dates where someone was so nervous they couldn’t even hold eye contact, or spoke so fast they couldn’t figure out how to end a sentence, or even (much to my wide-eyed horror) they actually tripped over their own feet.

These situations happen to everyone at some point — whether it’s because you’ve built up expectations of a prospect you’re about to meet or because you’re totally enamored with your date. Eventually there will come a time when you will need to compose yourself.

Take a deep breath. Smile. Remind yourself that the person sitting across from you is probably just as nervous. Perhaps even crack a joke to break the ice about the first date jitters. You can do this!


Flirting Physically

by Tamar Caspi under Date Night,Single Life

Body language is important — especially on a date or at a singles event — but when does physical flirting go too far? We all know about making eye contact, looking away, and then making eye contact again (women typically add in a hair flip or twirl for good measure); and then holding the eye contact and adding a smile. But when is it too much?

If you’re constantly licking your lips or biting the corner of your lip, remind yourself that you’re not LL Cool J and put your tongue back in your mouth. The same goes for caressing your fingers down your cleavage or mimicking a growl or a bite. Tone it down. Unless of course your intent is just to hook up because that’s the impression you’re giving off.

There’s a difference between flirting with class and flirting with crass, and it’s not a fine line. It’s a wide, multi-lane highway. You can be obvious about flirting without being over the top.