The early stages of dating usually come with their fair share of awkward moments. Any trip-up or uncomfortable situation can be mortifying when you are getting to know someone. The best way to deal with these situations is to relax and take it easy. The way you handle awkward and embarrassing moments in dating can determine the direction your relationship takes.
1. Dealing with the Awkward Silence
Most people will experience uncomfortable gaps in conversation on their first dates. Relax and keep in mind that you are just getting to know each other. Be reassured that your date has probably already experienced this in going out with someone else for the first few times. Prepare for these gaps before going out on a date by thinking of a few questions or conversation starters that you can use when there is uncomfortable silence. You can also bring up a trending topic or major news event and ask for your date’s opinion.
2. Too Fast, Too Soon
You got carried away and said “I love you” or talked about commitment before the other person was prepared. Perhaps it’s the other way around: You were caught off guard and don’t know how to respond. When one dating partner moves faster than the other is ready for, it can be awkward and embarrassing, but it doesn’t have to end in disaster. Take it as an opportunity to discuss your feelings, emotional availability and goals. Agree to take it slow and wait for deeper commitment until you both feel ready.
3. The Exes
As much as you try to avoid the ex talk, it is bound to come up sooner or later. If your date asks you about previous relationships, give short and concise answers; there is no need to go into great detail. Don’t take it as an opportunity to show off how popular and awesome your ex was – this will only serve to intimidate your date. If your date brings up an ex, be nonchalant and avoid prying for more information. If you bump into one of your exes, keep the exchange polite, short and friendly.
4. Embarrassing Moments
Having too much to drink, getting sick or over-sharing in front of your date can all be mortifying experiences. Although you might want to go into hiding after such embarrassment, consider it an opportunity to bring your relationship to a more intimate and comfortable level. The best way to deal with an embarrassing situation is to laugh it off and move on. In a study published in the November 2012 issue of “Group Processes and Intergroup Relations,” researcher Joshua W. Clegg of John Jay College found that humor can lower levels of social awkwardness.