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How many dates does one wait until the first kiss? It’s an agonizing question that often comes up in coaching or therapy with the post-divorce set.
It’s usually prefaced by some nail biting, along with, “I’ve been out of the whole dating scene for so long,” or “I have no idea of how dating works anymore.”
A new study conducted by DatingAdvice.com found 25 percent of Americans would wait until the third date or later to kiss for the first time.
One could also say 75 percent of Americans would not wait until the third date or later to kiss for the first time. That number soars to 82 percent for us post-divorce folks.
What’s a girl to do? There’s no short answer to this, but here are some things to consider.
You’re not going to fool someone by pretending to be something you’re not.
If you’re a liberal, be a liberal. If you’re anti-something, be that. If you love to laugh, do it. If you’re an uber-intellectual, flaunt it.
Being yourself allows you to connect, or not, with the person you’re with. It helps you know if you want to connect with them physically.
Be open to what’s happening between you and your date. Engage in the conversation. Learn things about them.
If they lean in and it feels good, you can lean in, too. If they seem stiff and uncomfortable, maybe you want lean in if you’re interested or not. See what happens in this dance of connection.
“There are no rules. You make
it up as you go along.”
There are many reasons you may not feel a kiss coming on. You don’t care for the person that much. You really like the person a lot and it’s causing anxiety. You realize you’re not ready to be that close to someone. You’re suddenly not sure about anything.
All of that’s fine. You’re exploring the possibility of a relationship with someone new after the end of a marriage. It’s a confusing time.
On the other hand, if you like the person and you feel comfortable enough to kiss them, go for it.
Do only what you feel comfortable with. Don’t allow someone to pressure or guilt you into any unwanted physical contact. You have as much control as they do about whether to kiss, touch or hug.
There are no rules you must follow. You make it up as you go along.
How do they react to the real you? What are you learning about them? Do you like what you’re experiencing? What does your gut say about them? How do they react to your assertiveness?
Let me pose one more question: Did you have any idea about how dating worked when you were 20?
I’m guessing you didn’t know how it worked then any better than you know how it works now. That’s probably because no one knows how it really works.
Every date is different. Every couple is different. You can call me unromantic, but I say no worries. A kiss is just a kiss.