A recent story about a one night stand which spilled into Boston’s recent citywide lockdown and prevented an early morning walk of shame made me think about hooking up on the first date. After you’ve taken the time (and money) to sign up for JDate and complete your profile, then connect with someone and plan a first date, you have to decide what to do when you hit it off so much that you kinda, well, wanna hook-up. Should you?

It’s quite the predicament when you have awesome chemistry but are just on the first date and want to have a second date but, on one hand, are not sure if hooking up will forfeit your chances for a second date or, on the other hand, if not hooking up will forfeit your chances for a second date. There’s no right answer.

But there are signs to look for to make sure that the chemistry isn’t faked by your date just to hook-up: is your date agreeing with everything you say and has he been very affectionate from the beginning of the date even before you really knew how you felt? If your date is offering lots of compliments and yet still making you feel as though if you don’t hook up with him (or her, girls got game too!) then you won’t get a second date? If you are ever made to feel like a second date hinges upon a hook-up then that’s your sign to bail.

If the date feels very genuine then go ahead and follow your instincts but I strongly advise to keep the hook-up PG-13 lest you end up coming across as someone lesser than who you’ve said you are. Is a make-out session warranted when you really like someone? Sure. But keep your clothes on and respect your date by leaving their clothes on.

Everyone is going to get burned at some point by this predicament. If you choose not to hook-up because you like the person so much that you don’t want to ruin it that you therefore send the wrong signals. Or you hook-up thinking it’s going to lead to a second date and never hear from the prospect again. Or hooking up and letting it go too far that you end up being a one night stand. These are unfortunate parts of dating, but don’t take it personally just learn from it and try to read the signs next time so you can better trust your instincts.

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