ating is not therapy. There are many ways to kill a relationship. Getting heavy and examining everything is certainly one of them. Conditioned by therapy and self-help books to tell all, women tend to overdo it on first dates, bringing up past relationships, their hurts and fears, their alcohol or drug problem—all in an attempt to bond with this new man. This is deadly and boring. Be intelligent but light, interesting yet mysterious. That's why we have suggested not opening up too fast. (See also Rule #9.1 How to Act on Dates i, 2, and 3.) The first date should be short; so you don't say too much. Remember, the person who talks the most has the most to lose.
By the end of the first date he should know just a few facts, such as your name your profession, how many siblings you have where you went to college where you grew up, and your favorite restaurants. By the end of the first date he should not know your dating history. Don't reprimand him for picking you up thirty minutes late and then tell him you were afraid he would never show up, that you felt abandoned, and explain that "abandonment" is one of your issues in therapy. Don't tell him that his behavior reminds you of your ex-boyfriend who was also never on time. Even if this is true don't tell him. Don't worry. By doing The Rules, you will automatically attract a loving, attentive husband who will be around so much that you won't have time to think about your abandonment issues!
If you have a burning desire to tell him a secret, The Rules credo is "Haste makes waste." It's always better to wait before telling someone something that you might feel ashamed or nervous about. Wait at least a couple of months. Better yet; wait until after he says "I love you." Unless he loves you, it's none of his business anyway!
Too many women tell intimate details of their lives far too soon. This is not only unwise but also it doesn't work. No man wants to be the recipient of a therapy session upon first meeting you. No man wants to hear how wrong or messed up your life has been before he really loves
You are not on this date to get sympathy but to have a nice evening and get him to call you again. Remember Rule #9—that the first three dates are about being light and charming, like a summer breeze. Men must always remember you as mysterious on the first three dates. Their initial impression tends to go a long way. If and when things get serious, you can casually tell him about your difficult childhood and some of your fears. Even then, tell him in an easy, short, simple way. Don't be dramatic about your past. Don't go into long details. Don't be burdensome.
Let's say you are a recovering alcoholic. He takes you out for a drink on your first date and to dinner on the second. He notices you only ordered club soda both times. He is about to order a bottle of wine and wants to know if you'll join him. Don't say, "No, I never drink. I hit a terrible bottom with drugs and alcohol two years ago and now I'm sober in AA." Just say, "Nq, thanks," and smile. After a couple of months when he's madly in love with you and you feel that he would not judge you for your drinking problem, you can tell him something like, "I used to drink a lot in college. It really made me sick. Now I'm in AA and I don't drink anymore. I feel better." Then smile and go on to other, more pleasant conversation. If he loves you, he will not make you feel bad. He won't argue with you or try to encourage you to "just have one." He might even start drinking less himself to make you feel better. He might even say that he's proud of your sobriety and discipline.
If you've had a serious illness and you're embarrassed about obvious scars from your surgery, wait until you're about to be intimate with him and then casually mention, as you take your clothes off in the dark, that you had an illness. If he loves you, he will kiss and caress you. Don't bring up the illness in a serious, heart-to-heart talk on your first date. Remember, especially in the beginning, don't be too intense about anything or lay all your cards on the table. In general, the less tragic you are about your life circumstances, the more sympathy you will probably get. Ask for sympathy and you never get it.
If you don't know how to hold on to a dollar, don't balance your checkbook, have an answering machine filled with calls from bill collectors leaving threatening messages, don't tell him what a mess you are with finances and that you got it from your father who once gambled away your college tuition. Now you might feel that we are asking you to act casually about your problems, but the fact is, you are bad with money and he will soon see that. But does he really have to know about the creditors and your canceled credit cards? No, all he has to know is that money is not your strong suit.
We are not suggesting that you hide or lie about bad things in your life. just that you not burden him with all the gory details too soon. Does he really have to know that your last boyfriend dropped you for your best friend? Can't you just say, if he asks, that your last relationship "just didn't work out"?
He should always feel that he's in love with the girl of his dreams, not someone damaged. If you feel damaged (many of us do in some way), read Rule #1 again and again. Remember, you are a creature unlike any other! It's when and how you tell him your darkest secrets, not the secrets themselves, that matter.
By the time you are engaged, he should know all that really matters about you and your family and your past. The Rules are truthful and spiritual in nature. It is morally wrong to accept an engagement ring without revealing whatever truths about yourself you need to share. Tell him these things in a calm, n on dramatic manner and don't, as some women do, surprise him with these skeletons after you're married. That's not the time to tell him that you were previously married or never finished college. It's not fair to him and not good for a Rules
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