What He's Thinking After Your First Date
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Online Dating Dish1 of 11
By Brett Smiley
Whether you're looking for a fling or a long-lasting love, online dating may be just the tool to help you find Mr. Right (or Mr. Right Now). To give you some insight into the male mind when it comes to connecting online, we chatted with seasoned daters—some who even met their future wives online—to understand what a guy is thinking on and after that first in-person date.
Most Dates Are Ordinary2 of 11
Kevin, 39, says he had a number of "pretty average" dates before he met his future wife. "There were only a couple of dates where I was eager to get out fast," he says, recalling one horror story in particular. "After being over an hour late, she got up from the table, twice, to throw up in the bathroom." Of his online-made dates overall he says, "Great experiences, all of them, but I am so relieved to be done!"
Crazy Things Can Happen3 of 11
If the experiences from Jeff, 32, are any indication, then online dating can produce some wild stories. After sharing a bit too much sake over dinner with a woman he'd met on a dating site, the night continued at a bar, and then culminated in an alley, where he and the woman slept together. "I guess the age-old lesson is that alcohol only leads to good things for guys and bad things for girls," he says. Another lesson: Some guys are only looking for one date.
Reality Bites4 of 11
Jason, 26, recalls a date with a woman who'd invited him to come out with a couple of her friends. When he arrived, she and her pals were already drunk. "She apparently altered her pictures, because her face and body were probably twice as wide as advertised," he says. "We rehashed a bunch of the same points we'd already discussed online, and I eventually went the gentlemanly route and walked her home, then kept my distance."
Stay Positive5 of 11
David, 37, says that his experience has guided the way he handles those mismatches. "Whenever I'm out with someone and I realize we're not compatible romantically, I try to make the best of the situation," he says. "For the rest of the date, I look for what makes her interesting. Maybe it's her hobbies, maybe it's an interesting story about growing up, or maybe she just has a perspective different than mine and I can see things from a different point of view. Even if I don't find my soul mate, I try to have a positive experience."
Analysis Is Inevitable6 of 11
Even after numerous online-arranged dates, Mark, 32, still gets anxious when he meets a woman for the first time. He worries he'll flub key details—"Was she the one who had the anecdote about the speeding ticket? Or was that the girl for tomorrow night?"—and sometimes dwells on how many other guys she's currently seeing. He also speculates on how he's being judged. "There's usually a point where I think, 'I can see myself with her. ... Is she thinking the same?'" says Mark. "Or, is she disappointed in my real-life persona?"
Double Standards Remain7 of 11
While Jim, 28, may have enjoyed the outcome of one of his recent dates, he ruled out the woman he'd met in terms of her long-term potential. "I exchanged a few messages with a nice-looking girl and finally met her at her place to watch a movie with her and a couple of her housemates—her idea," he says. "We got close during the movie, had a few drinks, and I ended up spending the night. I was thrilled, but at the same time, I won't date a woman who gets down on the first date. Maybe that's wrong, but it's true."
Speed It Up8 of 11
Paul, 31, says that the pre-meeting process is a little slow for his taste. "There's generally enough back-and-forth ahead of time to know that you aren't meeting a psycho for drinks," he says. "We're on the site to go on dates, so let's get to it and see if there's any chemistry." Plus, he says, if there is too much chitchat before meeting, then you might run out of "fresh material for the date itself."
Expect The Unexpected9 of 11
Lee, 31, met his future wife online, but he almost blew it. "I was 15 minutes late, sweaty and out of breath. I thought she was going to want to escape mid-meal," he says. "I made it through dinner relieved that we were having a blast. I ended up back to her apartment, and we stayed up the whole night talking about everything from sports to ex-lovers." A year and a half later they were married.
Don't Play Age Games10 of 11
Chris, 36, says he met a woman who said she was his age. Only she wasn't. "When I walked in, the only woman I saw was 50-plus years old," he says. "She said that she was sorry that she lied, but finds that she has more in common with younger guys." Chris never saw her again and, while he doesn't harbor ill feelings, he found it unfair for the woman to shave more than five years off her age, even if she was young at heart.
Stick It Out11 of 11
Dan, 31, said he had several disastrous dates with women who either lied about their appearances or were socially awkward. "I definitely thought about having a family emergency or more elaborate escape plans," he says, but he worried that such a stunt might cause hurt feelings so he never followed through. He did, however, eventually meet his future wife online.