It is such a let down when you find out you really don't have too much in common with your date after far too many episodes of sexing it up then meeting parents, moving in together, a possible proposal, a pregnancy, and more. You feel like running away, ending it all because, "I should have...I could have...I wish I had..." a little too late when mistakes are already made, some you just have to live with. But how does one minimize the regrets in a new relationship?
One. Keep dates out of your apartment/home for as long as you can.
The day you opened that door and let her/him "to stay awhile" is the day that you said, "Let's have sex." Whether you verbalized it or not at some point he or she is going to expect some action in your bedroom. Remind yourself, "I don't really know my date well enough to share a glass of water much less a bed together!"
Two. Don't plan an intimate vacation together that includes a hotel room.
At some point in the relationship one or both of you will want to go somewhere out of town, but is it necessary to room together? Why awaken something between you two that has yet to fully develop? Are you seriously considering a committed relationship with this person? What if she becomes pregnant? What if he has an incurable STD? Think before you sleep!
Three. Value time alone.
Spending time alone helps you think about many things as it relates to your date. You can prepare questions, conduct research, talk to others about this person, and plan for fun things to do that don't involve a bed.
Here are some things you can do that will not only be interesting, but will help you determine whether your date is compatible with you.
Let's say you like sporting events, then offer to take your date to a game, but watch her/his reaction and then use the opportunity to find out if he/she is a couch potato, beer drinking, loud mouth who doesn't miss a game. With that information, you will know what most weekends will look like when the newness of the relationship wears off.
Invite this person to a crowded venue. Use the people atmosphere as a test to see how he or she handles being around others. Does it irritate him or her that there is so much activity happening around you both? Does he or she act strange around crowds? When you see the behavior is odd maybe this person might not do well when you invite him or her to your professional events.
Consider taking a class together. This is a good way to know whether or not your date is sincerely open to learning new things. If he or she complains a lot, acts impatient, and often tells you, "I don't like..." then find out what he or she likes and suggest you two take a class together in that too on a later date. Then compare how he or she behaves between the two classes. This will also help you find out more about him or her in an environment he or she enjoys and whether or not you could tolerate your date's interest in a committed, long term relationship.
Bring your date to a family event. Can your date do well amongst curious, bold talking relatives who only want to protect you?
From the grocery store to the library, there are many places you could go together to learn more about one another's interests. When you look beyond the bedroom, you just might discover things about your date you would have most likely overlooked had you been intimate. Pay attention to his or her facial expressions when interacting with others. Notice how he or she dresses and smells when going out with you. Mix up settings so you get a good idea how he or she dresses for each. Test this person who might one day be your wife or husband. Ask a controversial question, make a bold statement about one's views, and question immoral decision-making.
When one is considering someone to be in their lives in the most intimate way, he or she needs to know what is a date bringing or not bringing to the table. Establish your boundaries early. Don't give into tempting situations just because your date says, "It's okay...I like you...I love you...you are the best date I ever had...I want to marry you...I will give you money to help you with your problem...I care." All of these statements are nothing more than lures when one chooses to ignore your boundaries so that he or she can get sex. Remind this person of your boundaries and mean what you say. If he or she respects your wishes, then who knows, your date might be a keeper!
Read more of her work at http://tipsdatingoldermen.blogspot.com