Maybe not even the second, or third.
Alcohol and a number of situations simply don’t mix. I’m starting to believe that one of those situations is dating. Personally, I find it a low-pressure setting to meet someone at a bar, have a drink or two and just talk. No one has to spend a ton of money, and no one has to feel obligated to continue seeing someone because they did. Bars offer surroundings just intimate enough to make you feel comfortable, and a drink can help you relax.
However, it doesn’t always work like this as some get carried away with the consumption of alcohol. This is not a good look when in the beginning stages of getting to know a person, and almost never ends well. Drunkenness brings out the best in no one. Most of my initial meetups at bars have gone completely fine, but I’ve now had enough that took a detour to make me question the method going forward.
It doesn’t even have to be a bar, just a place that serves liquor and is conducive to drinking. I’ve ditched a guy at a concert because he refused to stop grinding and gyrating behind me. This was literally our very first in-person encounter. We had dinner at the venue beforehand, which actually went great. There was engaging conversation and a few laughs. He carried himself like a responsible, respectful and intelligent guy. Five drinks later as the show got underway, he became someone else.
Alcohol can quickly turn “gentlemen” into absolute pervs. They get very bold, and inappropriately touchy-feely. Another instance involved a guy downing shot after shot until he too started to feel sexy. He’s dancing, using my hand to rub his face, kissing me on the cheek, forehead and trying the lips despite no indication that I’m into it. This one was so worked up that he even started to be flirty and suggestive with other women. I’m still not completely convinced he didn’t pop some ecstasy beforehand.
At no point in either situation was I fearful, just supremely annoyed, disgusted and turned completely off. In both instances, the guys also tried to load me up with drinks. Certainly, that’s a motivation for the overindulgence. They don’t want to get drunk by themselves. I believe some men choose bars for dates to intentionally try and get a woman wasted in hopes that they’ll get lucky. The thing is, when it doesn’t work and you’re the only one so highly inebriated, you make such an ass of yourself that you’ll probably never see the woman again. All of that good interaction you may have had prior just goes out of the window — Along with any future chance you may have had at getting her into bed.
I’ve seen guys go from sweethearts on first date to argumentative and angry on the second because they got a little comfortable and drank too much. I won’t blame it all on the alcohol though, it only releases your inhibitions. It’s more likely that these men were never really upstanding gentlemen to begin. They were trying, and perhaps only pretending.
Not everyone can hold their liquor, and not everyone cares to try. With the understanding that others may not know their limits, or may even deliberately push past them, I think I’ve decided that initial meetings are best without the incorporation of alcohol. Let’s meet for a smoothie or at a coffee shop. Maybe a park would be nice. We can walk around a museum, hang out at a library or the food court at a mall. All of these are low-pressure, inexpensive outings that don’t take place at a bar or lounge. (Or a concert with a bar/lounge.)
Then, perhaps once we’ve had a chance to converse and get to know one another without the element of impaired judgement, I won’t mind having a few drinks and getting handsy.