It took a long time, but at last he manages to drum up the courage to speak to her. They arrange to meet at a cinema, and he buys tickets to a Disney film. Romance and animals – girls like that kind of thing, he thinks.
In the meantime she’s walking—slightly unsteadily—through the theatre doors on high heels. “Disney?” she asks, somewhat surprised. Action movies are more her style. During the film, he spills Coke on her dress. Nice first date!
“It’s quite normal for the first date not to go as planned,” says psychologist Elisabeth Raffauf.
A date begins with a rendezvous. However, not everyone can muster up the courage to ask someone they like to go out. A glance or a smile are usually the first steps. Some people prefer to flirt over the telephone, by text message or via online chat, according to Jutta Stiehler, who heads the Agony Aunt section at teen magazine, Bravo.
Social networks are a great way to present your best side to the world. It’s also easy to manipulate personal information, such as taking a couple of years off your age. It’s often the case that the first offline date begins with a little white lie.
“Boys and girls are disappointed when they notice that the person they have a crush on has not been telling the whole truth,” says Beate Martin, who works for the Pro Familia family planning organization. “You should try and clear up any little untruths as quickly as possible – either before meeting up, or during the
But what happens after your crush says yes to a meeting?
The ideal place for the first date is somewhere that both parties like, and will also be a source of conversation. Raffauf recommends choosing a public place. “That will make it easier to get away if things are not going well.”
The first date is about “looking, getting to know each other, and working out what your crush is like,” says Martin. That’s why it’s not a good idea to tell everything there is to know about yourself. Good conversation is also about discovering what the other person likes, and what their interests are. It’s also important not to dominate the conversation. “You should also listen and show you’re interested in the other person,” says Raffauf.
The key is not to disguise your true character, because that is bound to fail. “You can choose your words carefully, but body language and gestures cannot be controlled. They tell a lot about yourself, and show who you really are,” Raffauf continues.
If you stay true to yourself, your first date will be a success. However, not every date marks the beginning of a relationship. It might happen that the chemistry is wrong, but you shouldn’t let that dampen your spirits, says Raffauf. “You want the other person to like you for what you are. But if that doesn’t happen, then it was never meant to be.”