Usually people tell you NOT to do this on a first date – but I disagree. I explain how bringing up this topic reveals whether your date’s a keeper – or whether to cancel that second date.
The topic I suggest raising is … ask them about their ex.
And the reason I suggest raising this topic is because how they talk about their ex is how they will talk about you one day!
Cancel that second date if:
- They are bitter about their ex
- They blame their ex (and/or a third party) 100% for their breakup
- They get completely lost in long, complicated, unpleasant stories of separation and/or child custody disputes.
Interested in co-dependence?
Only consider a second date with this person if you are interested in a co-dependent relationship (co-dependency = enabling each others dysfunctions). Co-dependent relationships can be relied on for a steady supply of energy-sucking drama. Ask me how I know!
As an example of what to avoid, years ago I had a date with a man who said something really nasty about his ex-wife. I can’t remember exactly what it was, but it shocked me at the time. He had quite the chip on his shoulder. The chip was also at odds with his friendly, easy going, dating profile (this is long before the time of Tinder).
You can’t write that!
When I pointed out this discrepancy to my date, he laughed. He said his sister had looked over his shoulder while he was writing his dating profile, exclaiming; ‘You can’t write that!” And she re-wrote it for him.
No second date!
Still hooked on the ex?
- Also, while we are here, unless you are interested in the emotionally unavailable, avoid a second date with someone who still has strong feelings for their ex.
This may seem obvious stuff, but…
I mention this seemingly obvious red flag as some of us ARE looking for the emotionally unavailable. Even if we aren’t looking for the emotionally unavailable, if we are lonely and/or our date has other, appealing qualities, it will be tempting to overlook the fact they aren’t ready for a new relationship. Ask me how I know!
Do consider a second date if:
- They can see how they might have done some things differently in their former relationship – and will do differently in the future
Basically you want to see some self-awareness and evidence of learning – some evidence that they aren’t just going to be repeating the same problems with you.
Even if their ex was certifiably the most awful person in the world – why were they attracted to them in the first place and why did they stay as long as they did?
I don’t mean to sound judgmental but …
I don’t mean this to sound judgmental (I can’t afford to, I’ve spent far too long in crappy relationships.) But if we want to break unhealthy relationship habits, we need to bring some self-awareness to our relationships and ourselves. And blaming others for everything is often a red flag for unhealed trauma and insecurity.
Many people say don’t talk about ex’s on a first date. But I say if someone isn’t relationship material, then why wait to find out?!
Hmmm this wee post isn’t as fun as the one I had in my head. Sorry about that. But it’s important. We need to know what the red and green dating flags are – and we need to become more conscious of our subconscious dating habits.
Want more reading?
A habit that saves relationships (& the goss on my new-ish man) – Multi-millionaire Marie Forleo shares the simple tips that saved her relationship AND I practice those very same tips on my new-ish partner! (Update: Feb 2022, my wonderful new-ish partner and I have been together for 4-years and two months! I’m slowly getting the hang of this relationship gig).
Wish you had more self-control and willpower? Of course you do. In this article, I debunk the biggest myth about self-control (HINT: You have PLENTY, you just need to know how to access it!) plus the science behind the habit of self-control. You can read about how to get more self-control here.
Sick of struggling with unwanted habits?
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TESTIMONIAL: KATE HOMMELHOFF, MT GAMBIER, AUSTRALIA
“Hi Rebecca, I wanted to thank you and let you know what happened to me after our session.
I have to say you were like a dog with a bone and as much as I was trying to ‘only play with the surface stuff’, you really forced me to look and go next level during our session. As uncomfortable as that was … you changed my life with that session.
Within 3 months I had left the worst job of my life, left the most toxic relationship I’ve ever had and then continued to look and work deep with how and why had I let myself get into those situations. This beginning a real journey of positive self discovery and healing …
My transformation has been mind blowing and our session was definitely the beginning of it all for me.”
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“I must say I have been using [Rebecca’s procrastination-busting] technique for 2 days now and they have been my most productive in months! It has taken the focus away from what is most pressing and moved it into just getting things done.”
TESTIMONIAL: CHARLOTTE-ROSE RUDDELL, WRITER, AUCKLAND, NZ (WHEN NOT IN POLAND)
“Over the last few days Rebecca has enabled me to shift some things that have been stuck deep down inside and frankly felt like they were not ready to be looked at or engaged with, let alone released so that something better could take their place.
Change is hard! We all want to change something about ourselves or our lives. It’s hard to know where to start sometimes. What Rebecca has taught me about procrastination has helped with so much more than just the single problem I wanted fixed.
I feel free!”
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