Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Ending the Date Gracefully

At first glance, it would seem easy to know when a date is over. The empty dishes have been cleared off your table, the check is paid, the theater lights are up, or the sun has risen. There are definitely markers. But a date is an emotional event. What’s an empty restaurant and five glaring waiters when this could be true love? Plus, if things are going well, you’re also battling your biology.
When you’re in the throes of infatuation, a chemical in your brain called phenylethylamine (PEA) causes those tingly feelings of euphoria. Other neurochemicals, namely norepinephrine and dopamine, may also play a part in your “lover’s high.” These natural “uppers” are what cause lovers to stay awake all night gazing into each other’s eyes or talking into the wee hours of the morning. Sadly, or perhaps thankfully, this chemically induced elation fades. Your brain can’t stay in a revved-up state forever! Pacing yourself may seem like a waste of time if you and your date have clicked from the start. But in the long run, it’s always better to leave them wanting more than feeling like it was just this side of too much. Assuming your date has gone well, you want the end of your first date to be the beginning of a beautiful relationship, not the grand finale of one memorable night.

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