There’s thrill, excitement, and nervousness when meeting someone you met over the Net for the first time. But, you must exercise caution when meeting someone you barely know.
Below are some tips to guide you safely when dating.
1. Make arrangements when meeting. Do not let the person pick you up from your house.
2. You should meet in places where there are many people or you can ask for help if your date gives you trouble. Public places such as malls or daytime parks are good places to begin with. If it is possible, you could go double or group date.
3. When you are eating in a restaurant or café, go Dutch. Pay half of the bill. In that way, you won’t feel obliged in returning the favor of treating your date if he or she gets to pay the whole bill.
4. If possible, avoid drinking alcohol while on a date. Alcohol could affect your judgment and lessen inhibitions. If you are drinking, keep the drink in your sight all the time. Do not get too drunk. You might not know what might happen later or remember what you have been doing.
5. If you have a car, use it. Make sure the gas tank is full.
6. Assuming that your date is safe just because he or she claims to be religious is wrong. For all you know, he or she may have a hidden side you still do not know.
7. Do not let any first-time date know where your house is. If you plan in seeing your date the second time, arrange for another date and assess from there if he or she should know where you live.
8. At night, avoid going to secluded, dark areas like parks or dimly lit places.
9. Listen to what your gut says. If there is something that does not feel right, then most likely, it is not. Leave immediately if you feel something isn’t quite right.
10. Tell someone whom you are with and where you will be going. You might also want to arrange a time schedule where someone could call you later and check up on you. You could also plan to meet some friends after the date.
11. Do not give your home contact number. If you really have to give contact information, give your mobile phone number.
12. Stay alert. Having good chemistry and fun the whole time does not mean you should let your guard down. Be sure you have a cell phone with you.
Online dating may be fun, but your safety should be your primary concern.