As we all know first dates can be very uncomfortable and perhaps a little awkward. Often times to ease the awkward pauses in conversation or tension, daters reach for a glass of wine or beer to relax their nerves. Typically this is a first date standard for many. I know I have been guilty of doing this on almost every date I’ve ever been on. In fact, when I was dating in my early 20’s, I can’t recall a time when alcohol wasn’t involved at some point. The worse the date, the more I drank and honestly it made me feel less nervous, more talkative and confident, and who doesn’t love to feel that way? But, should you drink alcohol on a first date? I’ve learned there are limits to drinking on the first date and some boundaries that you should follow if you use alcohol to increase your dating “social” skills.
Should You Drink Alcohol on a First Date?
Stick to 2 or 3 Drinks Tops
While drinking socially can certainly ease nerves, it’s probably not a good idea to “get wasted” on a first date. This could not only potentially put you in danger, it’s just not classy and will not make a great first impression too. If you plan on a dinner date use the 3-course drink system that I usually follow. One drink during appetizers or before dinner, one with your meal and one for dessert. Most dates, (if they are good ones) last several hours, which gives you plenty of time to slowly consume a few drinks. Sip and don’t chug. Do not go over the 3 drink minimum and for God’s sake don’t do shots! This will only lead to bad things…things that you might regret! Alcohol on a first date isn’t necessarily a bad thing, too much alcohol on a first date is.
Hydrate Yourself and Eat
It’s very important to drink water with every drink to counteract the alcohol, you don’t want to get drunk and start dishing about why your ex dumped you, right? If you are not planning on a dinner date and just plan on spending a few hours chatting at the bar, make sure to order water, eat before the date or suggest ordering a small plate to share throughout the evening. Don’t starve yourself, alcohol absorbs into the bloodstream much faster on an empty stomach and will make you feel intoxicated very quickly.
Make the Right Decision at the End of the Night
As women, we all know that alcohol increases the libido and sexual arousal and it’s not a secret to men either. While some men may think that getting you all liquored up may mean they are getting lucky after the date, surprise them by keeping the ball in your court and sticking to the drink minimum. Even if you’re with the most attractive person in the world, sleeping with them on the first date is probably not the best idea. The relationship will most likely not go anywhere after that in most cases. If you think drinking will make you not care, the reality check will occur to you once you’re sober the next morning.
Regardless of whether or not you choose to consume alcohol on a first date or not, choose to drink responsibly. Although you think that drink will make you seem more interesting, gain confidence, or simply will help you get in someone’s pants, it’s not necessary or safe to become heavily intoxicated on a date. If you have a history of drinking a bit too much try cutting back or maybe staying completely sober for your next date, or maybe go out with a non-drinker. It’s possible to create confidence without those first few drinks and you can still engage in great conversation while enjoying yourself. The more dates you go on without alcohol, the less you will need alcohol as a crutch to have fun. Try suggesting a date where you can display any skills or talents you may have. This a great way for someone to get to know you that does not involve alcohol.
Personally, I used alcohol to deflect my lack of confidence, and it wasn’t until I learned that there was more to life than the bar scene that I started dating men who didn’t drink. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy a nice beer or wine on occasion now and then, but to truly get to know someone on a deeper level alcohol can’t be something that you hide behind.
Thank you Saint Jude Retreats for this guest post. They are a non-12 step non-treatment educational program that concentrates on self-directed positive neuroplastic change and positive self-change as an alternative to traditional alcohol and drug rehab.