ACQUAINT: Getting to Know Each Other

This “Acquaint” section of the website focuses on getting to know one another. The purpose of the first few dates is to see if there is a suitable level of compatibility. But what aspects need to be compatible, and how do you best find that out?

Read about whether to trust your instinct, what to reveal during the first dates, how to handle surprising information, how to spot red flags, how to understand personality types, and what you may choose to do if the first dates didn’t go too well.

Don’t avoid uncomfortable topics; that’s what dating is for.

The purpose of dating is not to confirm automatic full agreement on every topic. There is no reason to feel disappointed the minute there is some area of disagreement. Unless the gap is felt to be truly unbridgeable, these are exactly the issues that should be discussed while on the date in an open and honest manner. Negotiation and compromise are not bad words. They will be your best friend in marriage, and you might as well befriend them during dating.

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Do I have to tell my date problematic things I have done in the past?

Guilt is a healthy response as a reaction to the past, yet it is a dysfunctional response to our posture for the future. If you have done things you should be ashamed of, not feeling guilt would be a bad thing. But if the guilt is undermining your confidence in your ability to move forward in your life, it is a really bad thing.

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Conversation on first dates

The first half-hour of the first date(s) is all about loosening up, breaking any tension and just … getting through it. Keep things lighthearted, natural and quite general.  Ask light questions with the intent to find something in common. When you are starting a conversation, not all topics will catch on right away. When something seems to catch both of your attention, hover on that topic and dive deeper.

First dates are not all about chit-chatting about random topics. The goal of the first dates is to get a sense of who the other person is. You both should be sharing bits about yourself in areas that are not that private.

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Be wary of judging the shidduch by how much you enjoy the date

It is important not to confuse the goal and process of dating. Dating is a means to an end. Hopefully is runs smoothly and is a highly enjoyable experience. But not everyone will find dating easy.

It is vital that you don’t judge the prospective life-partner by how much you are enjoying the dating, but rather my how suitable and compatible you are for each other.

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Are you frightened by the difference of opinion?

In a marriage, there will be a healthy exchange of views and even differences of opinion. The unanimity of everything is no great sign of a perfect relationship. Dating is in a sense a mini-marriage, so getting a sense of how you can resolve differences is an important step in the transition towards true couplehood.

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