How Important is the First Kiss?

September 18, 2012

in Relationships

Doisneau Kiss image

In the time I have been single, I have learned a few important things from dating:

  • The first kiss isn’t an indicator of chemistry.
  • A toe-curling first kiss isn’t a foreshadowing of a long-lasting physical connection.

The first date is typically a dance, searching for both a romantic stirring as well as obtaining information to evaluate the other. Somehow, while being interviewed, conducting an interview, conversing with the waiter periodically, and eating a meal, it is expected to determine if there is chemistry as well. For me, with my clearly-defined checklist, the initial focus of the date is about getting to know him, not the level of sparks flying.

The list keeps my head involved by evaluating answers to the peppering of questions throughout the evening, but the overall experience is important as well. In addition to his answers, here are a few things I consider on a first (and subsequent) date:

  • Was he rude to restaurant staff or strangers we came in contact with?
  • Did he complain about how much he hates (or has strained relationships with) his coworkers, ex, family, children, or friends?
  • Was he negative about his career?
  • Does his face light up when he answers questions about his kids?
  • Is he positive and enthusiastic about his life?
  • Did he make me laugh?
  • Was he a gentleman?

It’s great to feel a spark, but it might not happen immediately with one or both of us feeling nervous. Focusing on questions being fired at each other is also not a romance-inducing setting. As a result, I don’t worry about anything other than trying to figure out if he is a good match for me.

Conversely, there could be a fireworks show right over our cozy table for two. It’s great to have those feelings immediately, but it isn’t an indicator for anything other than chemistry. While that is important and must exist, it is just one component of a good relationship. A toe-curling kiss isn’t important if he is rude, disrespectful, or unkind. It will be meaningless if he isn’t a good dad or exhibit signs of having a paternal instinct. It will be insignificant if there are no common interests or great communication.

If we have similar interests, he’s funny, we have an easy-flowing conversation, or there is some other positive experience from the evening, then I am interested in a second date. At some point chemistry needs to exist, but if it doesn’t that first time, I have found it can surface on a subsequent date. Contrarily, I have had a significant, toe-curling kiss fade after a few months of dating to very little passion.

There are so many things to consider in making the decision to see a man a second time. A first, passionate kiss is nice, but not necessary for this Naked Girl.

What about you?

How important is that first kiss?

What are you looking for on a first date?

 Image Credit: Robert Doisineau 


@bluenotebacker September 18, 2012 at 12:18 pm

I agree that the 1st kiss isn’t always an indicator of chemistry. BUT if there seems to be a spark between you PRE-kiss, the stakes go up imo. There’s an expectation/hope that it will be great and potential for disappointment if it’s not.

I mean, the physical isn’t everything, or even the most important thing, but you can meet a great guy/girl and come to find out there’s no physical attraction. Is that really a romantic relationship you want to have? “I guess I could learn to like her/him that way?” Mayyyyybe, but I have my doubts.
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Naked Girl in a Dress September 18, 2012 at 12:24 pm

I completely agree that it has to be present and is an important element to a successful relationship. It’s also important to not get caught up in only the chemistry. I let it percolate a couple of dates unless there isn’t a match with what I am looking for in a man. On the other hand, if all the great components are there as far as common interests and he seems to be a great guy, without the chemistry, I still won’t go for a third date.

@bluenotebacker September 18, 2012 at 12:32 pm

I’m long-distance dating. 900 miles. I never imagined this would happen to me, but I really think she’s The One. That’s a whole can of worms I’m not really trying to open right now- some people will have strong opinions, and that’s fine. My point is that we’ve come to know each other so emotionally intimately, and not been together physically yet. We went to highschool together 20+ years ago, so it’s not that we’re total strangers.

Anyway, the *anticipation* of the physical aspect, of that part of the chemistry, is literally making my blood pressure rise. We talk about it, and neither of of feels like there’s any doubt there will be fireworks. But I think on some level I’m terrified the bar is being set higher than we can jump, lol.

That was more than I planned to share, I hope my drift is “gotten,” lol
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Naked Girl in a Dress September 18, 2012 at 12:41 pm

Hey, I am glad you did share. That is something to make you nervous, but if you have such a connection and desire for each other, I bet you will be happy when you have the opportunity to be together. I wish you the best with this relationship!

Marie Nicole September 18, 2012 at 12:40 pm

I need him to feel comfortable looking me in the eyes when we talk. I need to feel listened to. The wandering eye, 10 years down the road is one thing, but on the first date? It’s a NO-NO-NO-NO that and overtalking his work. Boring! Talk about something else, if all he talks about is his work on a first date this obviously means you’ll be waiting for him. A lot.
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Naked Girl in a Dress September 18, 2012 at 1:05 pm

Oh, great ones Marie Nicole! I had a date with a guy a few months ago who couldn’t make eye contact and it was an uncomfortable feeling. Agreed on work, but think it is also a sign he doesn’t have a life outside of work if he can’t share things he is passionate about outside of his career. You always have great comments. I am actually developing one of your comments into a post.

Marie Nicole September 19, 2012 at 2:20 pm

Wow! I’m touched by your compliment.
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Naked Girl in a Dress September 20, 2012 at 7:33 am

I can’t wait to share it with you! I have to finish writing it first.

Charlotte September 18, 2012 at 1:33 pm

Yes to all the things you said here. I will say, however, that if a guy is an absolutely HORRIBLE kisser I might give him a second chance but think that could be a huge turn-off. And I’m with you on the “rude to waiters” thing. Definite first date no-no and I wouldn’t want to see him again after that.
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Naked Girl in a Dress September 20, 2012 at 7:22 am

I commented to Marie Nicole in this comment thread that I had a date with a great guy who was a horrible kisser. I couldn’t imagine ever repeating the experience so I didn’t see him again. I agree it’s a turn-off.

in bed with married women September 18, 2012 at 1:38 pm

I disagree. Not that lovely kissing negates rude behavior and all that, but that good kissing is essential.

Not essential if you want to have a friendly pleasant relationship, but essential if you want passion, to breed and whatnot.

plus kisses are giving you all kinds of subconscious info about your suitor–genetic suitability, health and such. See also:

Lonesome Jackalope September 19, 2012 at 12:37 pm

I’m in agreement with your disagreement on this one. It’s everything to me.
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Naked Girl in a Dress September 20, 2012 at 7:26 am

I know you are disagreeing with me on the point, but I am actually agreeing with you. A bad kisser will not have another date with me; it would be terrible to have to date someone who made you cringe when he went in for a kiss each time. Actually, I can’t even imagine it. What I am referring to in the post is the chemistry aspect of the kiss. He could be a good kisser, but no fireworks the first time. If you give it a second or third attempt, it can be there. The spark between two people might not happen on the first kiss and that’s okay. Conversely, a spark with a future jack-ass probably should not be a reason to see the guy again. I believe we are thinking along the same lines, but you thought I would stay with a nice guy who was a bad kisser; I wouldn’t.

Dani September 18, 2012 at 2:07 pm

I think I am down the middle on this one. If a first kiss is great, it seems to become the highlight of the night and the main topic when discussing the date with friends. And if the kiss is bad, I think it changes your opinion a tiny bit about the person because you are still getting to know them and don’t have much more to base your opinion on. I love this post. :)
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Naked Girl in a Dress September 20, 2012 at 7:29 am

Thanks, Dani! It is great to have sparks flying over the first kiss, but the point I hope I got across is that you could have a pleasant, but spark-less first kiss that could develop to having sparks that second time. Hopefully that makes sense. The point is to not rule out chemistry if you didn’t feel something on the first kiss. It could easily be there on the second date. At some point you need to feel it, but give it a little time to develop.

Sue Diamond-Phillips September 18, 2012 at 2:16 pm

First kiss and i knew i was going to marry Mr SWAT :) It was an awesome, started sitting on a pool table, ended LAYING on the pool table, amazing first kiss…*sigh*
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Naked Girl in a Dress September 20, 2012 at 7:29 am

What an awesome story!

Jenn @therebelchick September 20, 2012 at 9:49 pm

I think first kisses are overrated. When I started dating my husband, we had awesome make out sessions…now we hardly kiss. He has somehow become a horrible kisser. LOL
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dlysen September 27, 2012 at 1:08 pm

Its amazing when I recall the first kiss I had experienced it because I can go back with sensations I had felt for the fist time.
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Naked Girl in a Dress September 27, 2012 at 2:14 pm

First kisses can be such wonderful memories, Dlysen. Thanks for stopping by from Jungle of Life.

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