The Question You Should Avoid Asking On A First Date

I want to talk today about one of those recurring first-date questions: Should you be straight with a guy that you’re looking for a relationship?

This is one of those questions that magazine columns obsess over, yet no-one seems to have a straight answer for it.

And it’s a tricky one: on the one hand, you don’t want to come across as desperate by admitting that you’re on a mission to find the one and will stomp on anyone who gets in your way. But then, you don’t want to have to hide your desires, pretending you don’t want a relationship when you secretly do.

How do we solve this dilemma?

Let me explain my position on this, because it might surprise you: you should not let a guy know that you are looking for a relationship on a first date.

This might seem weird coming from me; I’m always telling people not to play silly games like hard-to-get, and I never advocate using tricks to get a man in a relationship.

So why is it so important not to tell a guy you want a relationship on the first date?

Because you don’t!

You are not looking for a relationship. I’ll repeat that again. We shouldn’t just be looking for a relationship!

What we are looking for is the right person.

If we were just looking for a relationship, most of us could be in one within a week. All we would have to do is dramatically lower our standards and we could find someone who would want to be with us. But that relationship would do nothing for us.

Yet, why do so many of us walk around acting as though just being in a relationship is some kind of worthy goal to aspire to? We completely idealize relationships, we envy people who are in them, we feel bitter that other people have someone and we don’t, as we’ve completely bought into the paradigm that relationships are the pinnacle of success.

And are they? NO! Tons of relationships suck, they have no passion or fun, they consist of two partners who are bored of each other’s company, or who resent each other, or who haven’t had sex in ten years!

I understand though, when we’re on a first date, we don’t want to waste any time. We want to make sure that the guy knows what we’re looking for, and if he doesn’t like it, he can just leave right there and then.

There are two problems with this though:

  1. Just looking for a relationship scares a guy – it makes him feel like you are using him to cover up your own loneliness. This neediness scares him off.
  2. Most men don’t know they want a relationship until they have fallen for you.

Let me explain point 2. Contrary to popular belief, men are always assessing a woman’s relationship potential on a first date. He won’t tell you that because often he doesn’t even know he’s doing it. But – he hasn’t decided he wants a relationship yet.

A guy can be on a first date and be completely excited and blown away by the woman he’s with, and still if she turns around and says “are you looking for anything serious right now?” he’s going to suddenly be ambivalent. Because he hasn’t had time to seriously fall for this woman yet.

When I look back at some of my longest relationships, if you had asked me on the first date of that relationship what I was looking for, I probably would have said, “I’m just enjoying dating and being single right now”. Because at that point, that’s what I genuinely believed. And yet, within a month I was in a relationship.

A first date shouldn’t be an interview for a relationship. A first date should be geared around pure enjoyment – the only important questions are: Do I have fun with this person? Do I feel attracted to his personality? Is there an emotional and physical connection?

This is what first dates are for. Until we know the answer to these questions, there’s no point in asking our date what they are looking for in the long-term.

Besides, as I have repeatedly learned: what men think they want on a first date, and what they want on a third or fourth date can be very different things. Wait until you’re more certain about him, before you find out what he’s looking for.

What other things do you think should be left out of first-date conversation? Be sure to leave a comment and let us know!


Update: Our last UK Women’s Weekend of 2012 is taking place on November the 17/18th in London. This is the flagship event of GetTheGuy where the my team walk you through the complete A-Z of how to transform your love life, in two days of complete immersion. On the Saturday night of the event you even go and practice what you’ve learned live in London’s central venues. You will have never seen anything like it!

Don’t wait till 2013, take action now! Check it out here.


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50 Replies to “The Question You Should Avoid Asking On A First Date”

  • Great post thanks. I think I need to read this again as I always seem to say the wrong thing. Think its my nerves! There mmust be a handsome man out there somewhere for me.

  • Hi Matt and Bloggettes,

    I’m new to this site, saw Matt’s video on youtube (where you can find everyone and everything…) But this was a good find. I started out researching body language for business and political relationships, as this is my arena. One site took me to MH, so here I am.

    I happen to counsel Single women and men; qualifier, I am a Christian, Singles Minister, so my group is different, but not so much. They all want relationships, they all want love and marriage. So it’s the same goal, just different mindsets on how to get there.

    I do agree that you should not tell a guy (or girl, because in America, depending on where you live, or your profession, women are as elusive as the men) that you are looking for a relationship. I believe it is a known fact that human beings desire companionship, and depending again on the person, they may want something deep and long lasting, or just a casual acquaintance. However, most are out there looking for the “one” and I know in the back of everyone’s little brain, when they are out on a date trying to be clever and spontaneous and funny, (particularly women) is that little voice saying “is he/she the one”. Guys are not as comfortable with their emotions, thus the small voice is somewhat muted, and they fall off the cliff of being non committal. However, I have the pleasure of speaking to thousands of singles (im part of a mega church) in a very busy metropolitan area, where it is said women out number men 4 to 1. I get to help them on their quest for “the one”. My groups religious disposition, of course, leads them immediately to dating with the intent to marry, nothing so casual as the club scene (although some do experiment with that also).

    My point is, every single is looking for love, barring some unfortunate disaster in their past that is in need of healing, Singles want to connect. Whether by choice or the accidental “oops, Im in love and it’s too late to get out” type of connection, everyone single wants to be connected with their soulmate. So whether by your craftily skillful seminars, or by the hand of fate, Singles will find love and connection (prayerfully happiness as well), so long as they dont give up the fight. It all reminds me of the song “The Warrior” by Scandal & Patty Smyth. We do create the life and the love we desire, but we have to be willing to fight for it. I am such a romantic for throwing all things to the wind, losing all for love…but cautiosly and with wisdom.

    I look forward to newsletters, more videos and I may even attend an event. Even though doctrinally we may not agree on all things, there is a bit of wisdom to be found under some unlikely stones.

    Kudos to you MH. Keep up the good work and keep arming those “warriors”.

  • Fantastic! I love this article! So helpful!! Can I know what other things the guy wouldnt like to be talked about other than the subject of “relationship” ? Thank you in advance! :)

  • Hi,

    This article is a very good point of view! But I guess that we forget something very important! Relax people relax! On a first date is not important to fix on a question is important to trying to know the person in front of us better! This question is more important for our self than to the other person, we must ask our self if we want a relationship with that person, we must ask if we have at least 2 or 3 things in common!
    I starting to thing that this hole thing with the perfect love and the perfect relationship is a strong marketing strategy! I never heard in my life about a couple that hadn’t have ups and downs in their relations. We must believe but first of all we must live, feel and try to see beyond the curtain and stop with this fixed question that is nonsense!
    Peace & love everybody!

  • Hi Mathew…
    I have been seeing this guy for about 1 1/2 months now. He is 48 and I’m soon to be 43. Things are going great I see him every weekend and we spend some weekdays together as well sometimes. We are even making future plans together to do stuff.
    We are affectionate and hug , kiss and we show each other our affection in public and around friends. We have not slept together and he hasn’t tried anything at all. We are planning to go away for the weekend in a few weeks for my bday. I want to know if he doesn’t try anything is there something wrong or is he just being respectful. Ps. My friend’s think something is up. Please help to ease my mind
    Irene Moraga

  • Great advice, as usual! :D Thank you so much!
    (& thank God I have never asked that)

    I have a question lingering in my head: what exactly is “playing hard to get”? I’m worried if I unconsciously do that.

    Thanks in advance, I’m looking forward for your reply <3

    1. Or if this question has been asked and answered before please someone be kind to inform me >_<

      Thanks again, regards

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