Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Dating Conversation Taboos

There are several topics of conversation which some would say are best to avoid in the beginning stages of a relationship. Truthfully, any and all subjects can be discussed if broached in a tasteful and respectful manner. Some of these taboo topics include former relationships, sex, money, politics and religion.

The quandary is that these same subjects are vital components of many people's lives and are areas which warrant discussion between any two people who have caught each other's fancies and intend to build a relationship. So how do we convey the information back and forth while avoiding any unwanted offense?

Religion and Politics

When the desire arises to discuss something of politics or religion, remember to be cautious and respectful. Many people are passionate about these areas of their lives, and they do not want to feel as though someone else is judging them or wishing to persuade them to a differing ideal. These subjects can generally be discussed insofar as politely inquiring about the other person's position and then hearing them out. Once their explanation is complete or if they in turn ask about your stance, it then becomes appropriate to offer your own opinion while taking care not to throw too much weight behind that opinion.

Some couples find a friendly debate to be one of the invigorating building blocks of their relationship. If that becomes the case, it will be uncovered soon enough once two people develop a healthy, trusting relationship where each person is allowed to be themselves even when the opinions vary. In the early stages, most people are glad to share views and compare notes but not too many want to delve into a heated debate while trying to enjoy a date with someone new.

On the topic of money, it's never really polite to ask another person about their specific level of success. It can be acceptable for the individual to divulge whether or not they are financially secure, however. There's nothing wrong with a healthy love of money and pride in one's success, but extensive discussion about financial success can become tedious after too long. This is true of any topic that is discussed at exhaustive length.

Former Relationships
Until one of you says, "Tell me about your previous relationships" it's not usually a good idea to make mention of those previous relationships. They are a part of our past and hopefully a part of our learning curve. When dating someone new, the focus should be on them. No one wants to feel as though they are being compared to a past relationship, and no one wants to wonder if their date is bringing up an ex because they are still not over him or her.

Each new person that comes in your life is a new opportunity. Enjoy that person for who they are in that moment, and do not worry about the past. At some point it becomes appropriate to touch on the past as we come to know one another better, but those moments will typically arise organically.

This is another topic which will typically find its way into the conversation naturally. Unless this was the original and agreed upon intent of the date (by both parties), it's most appropriately discussed in the context of establishing expectations for a committed relationship.

With a little discretion and careful timing, you will find all subjects and easy to broach and comfortable to discuss.

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