There is something thrilling about getting a match and going on that first date with your Dateable match. It’s a bit of a mystery, butterflies are aflutter, and you're pumped about what this date could potentially turn into. But what if sparks don’t fly straight away as you had hoped, but fizzle instead? You’re left despondent and bummed that you didn’t feel a connection with someone you’ve been specifically matched with, thinking, 'what did the matchmaker see, that I didn’t feel?' Should that mean you write them off and start over again?
First date fireworks and love at first sight may happen in the movies, but in reality, they don’t happen that often. Most healthy relationships, from first date to leaving a toothbrush at theirs, take time to develop. Online dating has changed the way people are instantly ‘liked’ or dismissed so remember, in the real world rather than swiping someone aside, it’s often worth giving them a chance.
Attraction and connection are important, but there are many variables when you meet someone for the first time, that can affect those feelings. First date sparks aren’t necessarily proof of compatibility or if they’ll be a good fit for you as a long-term partner either. Some people are anxious or need to feel safe before they can be vulnerable, and vulnerability can increase feelings of connection. People can also grow into attraction — you just have to get to know that person over a few meetings, rather than judging their performance on one. How many times have you, (or people you know) interviewed terribly for a job, only to be given a chance at that job and proven over time that you were the right candidate all along?
As much as our advice is to give the match a chance, there is definitely a timeline. So how long should you wait until you pull the plug? Two dates? Five? A fortnight? There’s no formula, but if you’ve turned up to date number 3 dragging your feet, it’s time.
So what to do if sparks don’t fly? Firstly, before you even meet, remove any pressure on yourself to feel a spark right off the bat. Meet doing something where you both would feel most relaxed and try to have fun. Give your match a chance and remember first dates are full of anxiety and expectations, so try not to entirely judge your feelings toward someone based entirely on one date.