Dating Etiquette and Rules to Follow

When you start dating, following a few rules of thumb will help you be more successful. It’s tempting to avoid restating the basics, but the truth is, we all forget them from time to time. Dating is about two people coming together to get to know one another and find out whether they are compatible, then enjoying each other’s company and eventually forming a close bond. During this process, there are some important guidelines you should remember:

  • Dating should always be fun, and it’s as much your responsibility as it is your partner’s to ensure that it is. When you’re dating, make sure you do everything you can to make the time you spend together enjoyable.
  • Eye contact is crucial, and it’s good etiquette to give your date as much of your attention as possible. They should feel like they are the only person in the room. Do not use a date as an excuse for general partying.
  • Always be courteous and complimentary. Your date has made an effort to look nice for you, and your negative opinions and comments are unwelcome at this stage.
  • Never ogle your date. It’s rude, and it proves that all you care about is the other person’s physical appearance. This will turn a woman off faster than almost anything else.
  • Always show up for a date, unless you’ve given notice and let the other person know you have to cancel. Standing someone up is not acceptable, and it shows contempt for your prospective date by wasting their time. That kind of arrogance is detestable.
  • Always be on time, and never keep your date waiting. If your transportation is unreliable, plan ahead and leave early so you can be there when the other person arrives. Being late shows a lack of respect for your date and illustrates how disorganized you are.
  • Never be flashy or extravagant. There’s no need to attempt to impress your partner with your wealth and importance. It shows no taste whatsoever to throw your credit card around and order expensive champagne, unless you’re only after cheap thrills and don’t care how it makes you look in front of the person you’re trying to get to know.
  • Smoking excessively during a date is bad form, unless your partner also enjoys chain-smoking. In general, smoking in a restaurant will do nothing for your image and shows crass disregard for others.
  • Don’t be arrogant on your date, and try to avoid talking about politics and/or religion in the early stages. You may be very opinionated on certain topics, but that does not mean you’re right, or that your opinions won’t offend the person you’re with. Arrogance makes most people feel uncomfortable, so avoid it at all costs.
  • Never argue or be rude to others during your date — it simply is unacceptable. You’re trying to show the other person your best qualities, so arguing about the tip or whether the wine is chilled enough will make you look like a fool.
  • Be a good listener, and don’t talk your date to death. Listening shows interest and the ability to compromise. If your idea of a date is talking about yourself and your opinions all night, then do the world a favor and stay at home alone.
  • Dress well. In this day and age, there is absolutely no excuse for looking shabby. Dressing poorly shows laziness and will do nothing to make you look good. Furthermore, it shows a lack of respect for your date, who has more than likely made an effort to dress nicely.
  • Make an effort to be clean and smell good. Make sure you’re clean-shaven (where applicable), freshly showered and smell nice. It costs you nothing except a bottle of good perfume/cologne and some soap.
  • Never swear or use bad language. It will make you sound like an idiot. If you want to find the person of your dreams, you must treat them with respect.
  • Never discuss your other dates or how many people you’ve slept with. It’s rude and shows you have no class.
  • Even if you don’t like your date, don’t be quick to give them a hard time. Your partner is human and, like you, deserves to always to be treated with respect. You can still have a good time hanging out with someone you’re not attracted to, so treating them badly just because they’re not your type is unacceptable. Rudeness is not allowed.
  • Never tell lies on a date to get someone into bed or to try to make yourself sound good. You will be found out, and then you will be rejected. Tell the truth, or avoid a subject if necessary.
  • The man should pick up the dinner tab on the first date, and it’s probably a bad idea to discuss money at all at this stage. Many people feel that financial discussions are crass and lack sophistication.
  • Make sure your date feels comfortable at all times, and never do anything that might make them uncomfortable. Also, a man should always make sure his date gets home safely in a cab or by other means.
  • Never try to sleep with someone on the first date. Sex comes later. If you sleep together too early, chances are it will be over before it began.
  • Be as entertaining and witty as possible, and never rely on getting drunk as a fall-back plan. Drinking too much on a date shows that you have no respect for your partner and makes a mockery of the whole situation.
  • Call when you say you’ll call, and never leave someone hanging. If you didn’t have a good time on your date, don’t falsely promise anything or leave the door open. Doing so shows great disrespect for the other person, and it’s much easier for everyone if you’re honest about how you feel.
  • Never pretend to be single when you’re not. Telling your companion late in the game that you’re taken is very inconsiderate. Date only when you are single.

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