While it’s always thrilling to think the new guy – or gal – you’ve just met on that new dating website you’ve signed up on could be “The One” because you’re hitting it off so well and seem to have so many things in common, keep your wits about you when it’s time for that first date out in the wide world.
The lion’s share of people looking for relationships through online dating are just regular people, hoping to find love or companionship in a less-traditional way than going down to the local pub or out to a party in order to chat up strangers. Still, the danger always exists that you’re going to run across a complete nutter that goes to great lengths to tick all your boxes, just so they can get close to you for whatever nefarious reasons they have – so when it’s time to go out for coffee or dinner for that first face-to-face meeting, keep some important things in mind, experts say.
Firstly, make sure someone knows where you are and what you’re doing. It may be embarrassing to admit you’re using online dating to find a match, but don’t be ashamed, as plenty of people use the internet to find dates nowadays, so don’t let that be a barrier to you – especially if the unthinkable occurs!
Secondly, always meet your new date in a public place or a neutral environment. Never invite him or her into your home at first, and don’t accept an invitation to meed up at his or her flat, either – while you’ve been getting along famously over the internet, you never know if your new Mister or Miss Right isn’t actually some deranged serial killer or not.
Finally, if you’re going out to dinner or a bar, don’t drink to excess, no matter how nervous you are. Alcohol clouds your judgment, and you could end up in serious trouble if you make a poor decision; instead, play it safe until you’re sure your new love interest hasn’t escaped from the local centre for the criminally insane.