You wouldn’t buy a car without test driving it first or snag a fabulous pair of shoes without trying them on, but how do you feel about previewing a date before it’s scheduled to happen?
Recently, I’ve heard a handful of people talk about briefly meeting up with a potential love interest to see if there is any spark between them, before investing more time and money into that person. But, don’t be fooled, this isn’t a first date; it’s a “pre-date.”
Dating Coach Joann Cohen says this concept is more than a mere trend and is particularly common in the world of online dating because you can be whoever and whatever you want behind your computer screen, making most skeptical about the people they virtually meet.
“The number one fear amongst my clients is that the pictures associated with someone’s profile aren’t a true depiction of who they are,” Cohen says. “And let’s be honest, if you’re not attracted to someone, you’re probably not going to walk down lover’s lane any time soon.”
One of the biggest benefits to a pre-date is that it gives you an “out” if the two of you don’t click. This would ultimately eliminate what we girls call the “emergency phone call.” A heads up to all you guys out there, if you don’t know what this call is, I am letting you in on one of the biggest first date secrets women have.
The Emergency Phone Call:
- Is done between two girlfriends when one of them is on a first date.
- At a specific time, already discussed before the date starts, the friend will call to check in and see how everything is going.
- If the date is heading in the right direction, the call will most likely be sent to voice mail or the friend on that date will pick up and say she’s having a great time. Congratulations to you, there may be another date in your future.
- If she’s ready to bail, she’ll make up some excuse like the “emergency phone caller” is hysterical because her fish died and she needs to go help her immediately. In this case my friend, you will not be hearing from that girl again.
“Non-dates” are also helpful for those of us who don’t want to spend several awkward hours having a meal with someone we’re just not that into.
“There have been too many times that I’ve shelled out tons of cash on a first date, never to hear from that girl again,” Long time online dater Greg Fox says. “I don’t want to get burned anymore, pre-dates are a must.”
Meetings like these will also give you the opportunity to explore non-traditional, quirky and outside of the box places that may not be suitable for a first date; like a vintage record store or wacky gift shop. But, don't over do it! Pre-date veterans will tell you, much like job interviews, you won’t normally get another chance to make a first impression.
Dater Anderson Schultz has had several “non-dates,” and says even though it’s a quick and honest way to get to know someone with out committing an entire day to them; they can still be incredibly awkward.
“Online dating is like a free pass to cheat,” Schultz says. “You are ‘winking’ and getting to know multiple people at a time and for some that doesn’t stop when you log off.” Schultz is referring to one of his first pre-dates, where the woman he was meeting, was actually on a date with another guy! By the end of the night, he’d won the girl’s attention, but he can’t shake how weird it felt to have the other guy eyeballing him on his way out the door.
In the event that the pre-date is a bust and you’re certain that there’s no connection, Cohen suggests keeping the goodbye as short and sweet as the hello, and the key word here is: sweet.
“It’s just good karma to tell the person the truth,” she says. “Women always stress when guys don’t call them and it’s the same thing if you’re not answering the phone. Or, just send a quick email.”
Even a bad date, whether it’s a pre/non or anything else you call it, makes a great story!
Copyright 2011 Scripps Media, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
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