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Sex + Relationships

Asking For a Friend: What to Talk About on a First Date

Dating is strange and complicated and messy, to say the least. And first dates? They’re the best and worst, all at the same time. There’s a kind of awkward vulnerability and excitement that maybe this will turn out to something more. Dating has only gotten more complicated with the plethora of dating apps available and the COVID-19 pandemic. No longer are you meeting a cute guy in the quad or a cute girl in class; now you’re more likely to be swiping right on Tinder or staring at a blurry image on Zoom. It’s important that your first date, whether it’s a socially distanced walk outside or a video call, follows recommended COVID-19 policies, and now more than ever is actually worth your time. Netflix on a lumpy futon no longer cuts it! 

So if your usual version of romance pre-pandemic was a sloppy make out at a frat party or making steamy eye contact at a local bar, you might have to rethink the way you date when taking a relationship offline into reality. 


Wiktor Karkocha | Unsplash

One way to be prepared for the all-important first date is to have an idea of what to talk about, so there are no awkward silences and you actually learn about the other person. While it’s completely up to you what you discuss, it can be helpful to walk the line between too serious or personal questions that ruin the fun and talking about the weather. Here are 15 questions that I think are fun to ask on a first date. 

  1. What is your family like?

  2. Do you have any pets?

  3. What is your favorite movie?

  4. Do you like reality television?

  5. What is your favorite food to cook?

  6. What is the best vacation you’ve been on?

  7. What is your biggest pet peeve?

  8. What is your biggest turn-off in a partner?

  9. What is the worst first date you have been on?

  10. If you could go anywhere right now, where would you go?

  11. What are your friends like?

  12. Tell me more about your job/major.

  13. What do you like to do in your free time?

  14. Who is your favorite band?

  15. When you go out, who pays for food?

While these questions were all fun and relatively lighthearted, it’s important to use the first date to see if there’s chemistry and compatibility. Asking about different values and beliefs may sound initially intimidating, but it’s so important. Dorian M. of Her Campus Akron shares that they always ask a date or even a friend about their opinion regarding rights for the LGBTQ+. If your beau turns out to be transphobic or homophobic this can spell doom for a new relationship. Maddie M. says that she likes to ask a date’s opinion about political issues that matter to her. If you are a passionate liberal Democrat, a conservative Republican date may not necessarily be the most compatible. Anna H. also adds that it is important to use the first date to find out what a person is looking for. It is more crucial than ever to make sure you’re on the same page with a partner, and if one of you is hearing “Going to the Chapel of Love” and the other is hearing “WAP,” more communication is likely needed. 

Emily Janikowski, otherwise known as Em, can be found usually lurking in the depths of the Polsky building as a writing tutor, and when she isn't there, she is curled up in bed binge watching Law & Order SVU. Her passion lies in changing the world, and she hopes to accomplish this through majoring in social work.
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