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I realize that my past experiences have made me who I am today, but I still wish I could go back in time and have a sisterly chat with poor, clueless, "younger me" about relationships.

I could've written three novels, started a business, and hiked the Appalachian Trail with all the wasted time and energy.

In fact, I'd been going about being single all wrong.

When I started seeing my husband, aka the first guy I wasn't embarrassed to tell my therapist about, I was gobsmacked to realize how much I hadn't known about dating before then.

If you want something, be specific and avoid causing yourself unnecessary stress.

We're usually pretty open to new ideas." —Adrian B."Please don't critique or be too harsh about someone's sexual performance the first time you hook up with him.

Things are new and you aren't familiar with what the other likes yet. Opt for something that gives you both an easy out, like lunch or a drink.

Until you've had time to communicate about that stuff, it's impossible to weigh them against your former boyfriend of three years." —Greg B. If you guys have a great time, you're both left wanting more." —Greg G." title="" src="data:image/gif;base64, R0l GODlh AQABAIAAAAAAAP///y H5BAEAAAAALAAAAAABAAEAAAIBRAA7" data-src="https://hips.hearstapps.com/cos.h-cdn.co/assets/cm/14/25/539fc09300903_-_cos-10-couple-playing-ping-pong-de-mscn.jpg?

If you seem offended by it, that's as far as we go." —Steve M."Girls should try to avoid pre-judging before a first date.

It shows me that she's genuinely interested in spending time with me as opposed to wanting to be wined and dined regardless of who she's with." —Nate N."If the guy doesn't say something and take the check off the table to pay, it's probably fair to assume that you're going Dutch.

There are different reasons that a guy might not pick up the tab (some that might not have anything to do with you), but if you're into him, avoid looking too disappointed.

First few dates, make the food good, simple and completely forgettable so you can focus on each other." —Max S.

really awkward (which is understandable, especially if it's a blind date), so having a girl go the opposite route not only makes her more intriguing—it’s also a total turn-on." —Alex S." title="" src="data:image/gif;base64, R0l GODlh AQABAIAAAAAAAP///y H5BAEAAAAALAAAAAABAAEAAAIBRAA7" data-src="https://hips.hearstapps.com/cos.h-cdn.co/assets/cm/14/25/539fc091c55c1_-_cos-07-couple-staring-at-each-other-de-mscn.jpg? Girls have this tendency of expecting guys to read between the lines, then ending up disappointed.

If it doesn't happen in the beginning, he'll think it'll never happen." —Tyler L."It can take the edge off to meet with a group of friends.

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